Outlook for new year rises up to 46-month peak

HOUSEHOLDS are more positive about the financial outlook now than at any point since January 2010, after two quarters of robust economic growth.

Respondents to Markit’s November household finance index also report the strongest level of workplace activity since the survey started in early 2009.

The figures also reveal more muted expectations for inflation. On average, people currently feel that prices are rising at their slowest rate since mid-2010.

Just over a third of respondents expect their family finances to worsen in 2014, while 30 per cent now have positive expectations.

Despite higher confidence for the year ahead, more households say their personal finances are deteriorating than improving. Most people polled said their financial wellbeing had not changed in the last month, while nine per cent reported an improvement, and 29 per cent said they are in a worse position.

“While job insecurities have receded this year, the latest survey highlights that income and saving trends remain very subdued, especially at the lower end of the pay spectrum,” added Markit economist Tim Moore.