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Published
May 20, 2022
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It's bad: UK consumer confidence falls to its lowest since 1974

Published
May 20, 2022

UK consumer confidence tumbled again in May — this time to its lowest level in almost 50 years — after the cost-of-living crisis deepened and concerns over the economy and personal finances grew.


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Market researcher GfK said its closely-watched UK consumer confidence index, a measure of how people view their personal finances and the wider economic outlook, dropped by two percentage points to -40 in May. That surpassed the previous record low of -39 set in July 2008 during the global financial crisis.

Almost all confidence measures tracked fell in May, continuing a steep decline from April when households were hit by record increases in energy bills.

GfK said consumers’ assessment of both their own and the wider country’s prospect having plummeted over the past year. Consumer pessimism was most evident in people’s views on the general economy, with an index score of -63 for the past year and -56 for the coming year.

“Consumer confidence is now weaker than in the darkest days of the global banking crisis, the impact of Brexit on the economy, or the Covid shutdown,” said Joe Staton, client strategy director at GfK. 

“The outlook for consumer confidence is gloomy, and nothing on the economic horizon shows a reason for optimism any time soon.”

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