Consumer confidence is at risk of dropping sharply in the run-up to Christmas as shopper anxiety about the economy is compounded by growing unemployment concerns.

Consumer confidence fell six points to -31 in October with declines registered across all metrics, according to the GfK Consumer Confidence index.

Confidence in the general economy over the coming year posted the steepest fall, down 12 points to -50. Shopper confidence about the economy in the preceding 12 months declined six points to -67.

Consumers’ confidence in their personal finances over the previous year and the year ahead fell two points to -9 and one point to 0 respectively – a trajectory GfK’s client strategy director Joe Staton said is worrying considering “data was collected before the new round of Covid-19 restrictions came into force and the end of the furlough scheme, so this will negatively impact the index in the run-up to Christmas and the months beyond”.

The major purchase index and savings index both fell six points, to -27 and 14 respectively.

“There’s a worrying threat of a double dip in consumer confidence as concerns for our personal financial situation and even deeper fears over the state of the UK economy drag the index down six points this month,” says Staton.

“Despite low inflation and rock-bottom interest rates, a buoyant housing market and a raft of government financial stimulus measures, the prospect of rising unemployment is severely depressing our outlook.”