Public expectations for how the UK economy will fare over the next 12 months are at their lowest level in more than seven years, according to a new report released today.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has said the outlook for the general economic situation for the year ahead is worse than at any point since the final quarter of 2011.
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Expectations for higher unemployment for the year ahead have also been climbing and are now higher than at any point for the past five-and-a-half years.
The data, sourced from a Eurobarometer consumer survey, comes days after the ONS found that the British economy shrank for the first time in nearly seven years during the second quarter of 2019.
Over the three months to June, output fell 0.2 per cent, missing expectations of a flat performance and dropping 0.5 per cent compared with the previous year.
Amanda Mackenzie, chief executive of charity Business in the Community, said: “If this latest survey is anything to go by, the British public has got its finger firmly on the pulse of the UK economy.
“Prescient Brits have been expecting higher unemployment and for the general economic situation to deteriorate, and following last week’s negative GDP number they may well be proved right.”
She added: “With a no-deal Brexit looming, the UK economy is arguably at its most crucial juncture for a decade and it’s no surprise people feel less secure about their jobs and the broader economic picture.
“Staff anxiety levels will almost certainly increase if we enter a turbulent period for the UK economy and businesses have a key role to play in their employees’ wellbeing, not just economic but personal.”
Today’s report, which was focused on personal and economic well-being in the UK, also found that net financial wealth per head increased by three per cent for the quarter ending March 2019 compared to the same quarter a year ago, led by increases in equity and investment fund shares.