Consumer confidence holds steady despite Brexit chaos

Consumer confidence has held steady amid intensifying Brexit chaos, figures suggest.

The long-running GfK Consumer Confidence Index remained at minus 13 in March as expectations for the general economic situation over the next year increased two points but languished at minus 36 – 14 points lower than a year ago.

Confidence in personal finances over the coming 12 months increased one point to positive two but remains eight points lower than last March.

GfK's Consumer Confidence Index.GfK's Consumer Confidence Index.
GfK's Consumer Confidence Index.GfK's Consumer Confidence Index.

The major purchase index, a measure of confidence in spending on big-ticket items, fell four points to positive one – one point lower than 12 months ago.

Joe Staton, client strategy director at GfK, said: “Against a backdrop of stable inflation and a robust labour market, where wages continue to grow more quickly than prices, confidence has remained negative but fairly stable since the referendum.

“However, while UK consumers report a small increase in optimism for their personal financial situation for the coming year, the index is being dragged down by our nagging fears for the general economy.”