UK consumer confidence slides in May, in all five measures

UK consumer confidence slid in May, a total of three points to 1, according to GfK’s UK Consumer Confidence Index. All five measures used to calculate the index posted declines this month.

Consumer confidence refers to how optimistic/pessimistic households are regarding the state of the national economy and their personal financial situation.

German-based GfK (Gesellschaft für Konsumforschung – Society for Consumer Research) is the fourth-biggest market research organisation in the world.

Managing Director of Social Research at GfK, Nick Moon, said:

“In the short term, this suggests that despite rewarding them with a majority in the House of Commons, the public are not too confident about economic life under the Conservatives, given that almost all of the fieldwork for this month was conducted after the election, and the Index stands three points lower than last month.”

UK Confidence MeasuresThe indexes fell on all five measures. (Source: GfK)

“In the longer term, we seem to be in another of the periods of stasis that the Index goes through from time to time. Of the last 13 months, the Index has been within two points either side of 0 on all but three of them.”

“It is also worthy of note that the individual score for the general economic situation over the next 12 months fell by six points this month and is now 12 points lower than in May 2014. Given that the Index as a whole is one point higher than last May this is a worrying figure.”

The five measures declined as follows:

Personal Financial Situation: which measures changes in personal finances over the past 12 months, posted a 1-point fall to -1, which is nine points higher than in May last year.

The personal finances forecast for the next twelve months fell four points to three in May, which is three points below May last year.

General Economic Situation: this measure, which concentrates on the country’s general economic situation over the last twelve months, dropped two points to 1, which is six points higher than in May 2014.

There was a six point decline to zero in the expectations for the general economic situation during the next twelve months, which is 12 points below what it was in May 2014.

Major Purchase Index: fell by four points to 2, which is five points above May 2014.

Savings Index: posted a decline of 1 point to -3, which is six points higher than in the same month last year.