In September, consumer confidence reached its highest point since before the recession, marking “good news” for the economy.
The GfK UK Consumer Confidence Index recorded a three-point increase to -10 this month as four of the five measures increased. It is the fifth consecutive month the index has recorded an increase.
GfK managing director of social research Nick Moon said: “This is the highest the index has been since November 2007, when the catastrophic fall prompted by the credit crisis was developing momentum. Back then the Index fell a massive 35 points in a year (starting at - 4 in August 2007 and dropping to -39 in July 2008), but it has now reversed all but six points of that fall.”
Moon added that in the rises over the last five months the index has gained a total of 17 points, which is the biggest five-month gain since 1993.
But he was cautious as he said: “In the same week that figures from ONS show that UK productivity is lower than every G7 country except Japan, the Consumer Confidence Barometer has taken another clear step upwards, gaining three points to -10.
“Whether the current economic recovery is real or will prove to be a credit-fuelled bubble, this continuing steady growth in confidence looks like good news for the Government.”
The annual moving average jumped one point to -23.
Consumer confidence regarding consumers’ personal financial situation during the last 12 months stayed the same at -16, which is five points higher than September 2012. The forecast for personal finances over the next 12 months has increased one point to 1, which is up nine points year on year.
Regarding the general economic situation, consumer confidence for the last 12 months gained four points to -25, up 29 points on last year. Expectations for the general economic situation for the next 12 months jumped four points to 3, which is 30 points higher than September last year.
Meanwhile, the climate for major purchases increased two points this month to -14, which is 17 points higher than last year.
But the ‘now is a good time to save’ index fell three points to -17, which is a point higher year on year.