Brits most confident in two years

Kasmira Jefford
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CONSUMER confidence remained at its highest level last month for over two years, a survey revealed this morning, as Britons felt more optimistic about both the state of the economy and their own personal finances.

The level of concern around the UK’s financial situation dropped to 41 per cent in May compared with 43 per cent in April and 47 per cent in March, according to Lloyds TSB’s Spending Power Report . There was also a slight fall in the number of people who were downbeat about their personal finances, dipping from 47 per cent to 46 per cent in April.

The report found that spending on essential items grew at around two per cent, broadly in line with wider inflation, suggesting that the squeeze on spending power has eased.

While spending on food and drink has fallen, energy bills have continued to rise, with 79 per cent of consumers citing gas and electricity prices as their biggest worry.

Lloyds’ chief economist, Patrick Foley, said: “A gradual easing in the squeeze on consumers from essential spending is helping, although with energy bills increasing again, the improvement in spending power remains modest.”