Date: Wednesday 16 Jun 2010
Britons spent last month fretting about the new coalition government, the sovereign debt crisis in the eurozone and the volcanic ash from Iceland, causing a 10-point drop in consumer confidence.
The Nationwide’s sentiment index dropped to 65 in May from 75 the previous month, but it’s the growing pessimism around the present and future economic situation that’s more of a worry.
The expectations index sank 12 points to 93, taking the decline since February to 26 points, mainly due to change in sentiment on the economy.
Some 22% of consumers now feel that the economic situation will be worse in six months' time than it is today, said Nationwide's chief economist Martin Gahbauer, the highest since June 2009.
"There are clearly growing concerns among consumers towards the state of the economy and what the next six months hold. However, during this period retailers will be hoping that the football World Cup will have a positive impact on sales, and consumers will be looking for a clear plan as to how the coalition intend to bring the deficit under control,” he adds.
“Therefore, the next couple of months could be critical to the future direction of the UK economy and overall confidence among consumers."
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