Consumer confidence is higher than it was before Covid

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Consumer confidence has edged above pre-Covid levels for the first time, a survey suggests.

The GfK consumer confidence barometer has delivered a main reading of -7 for July, up from -9 in June and a two-point improvement on the score in March 2020. The market research organisation’s index measures how households feel about their own financial situations and the wider economy. It surveyed 2,000 people from July 1 to July 14.

Within the overall score, households’ forecasts for their personal finances over the next 12 months held steady compared with June with a score of 11. In July last year the score was zero.

When people were asked how they expected the general economic situation to develop over the next 12 months, the score was -5, three points down from -2 in June.

Attitudes towards making big purchases also turned positive, from a score of -5 in June to 2 in July. Significantly, this was 28 points higher than a year ago.

Joe Staton, client strategy director at GfK, warned, however, that inflation, new coronavirus variants or the end of the furlough scheme “could put brakes on the rebound”.