Rising prices sap Brits’ spending power, poll finds

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Households are struggling amid the unfolding recession in the country, the study shows

Consumer confidence in the UK has remained at its lowest level in almost fifty years for eight months now, as households across the country grapple with the cost-of-living crisis, data shared on Friday by research group GfK shows.

The monthly consumer confidence index rose to -42 in December from -44 last month and a record low of -49 recorded in September. The index, which dates back to 1974, reflects how people view their personal finances and wider economic outlook and it had never fallen below -40 until this May.

The survey was conducted at the beginning of the month and 2,000 people were polled. Although the index gained two points, the results of the study illustrate that concerns about the economic future remain acute. More consumers are saying they face financial difficulties due to rising prices and expect their situation to worsen over the next year.

“Real wages are falling as inflation continues to bite hard, further straining the discretionary budget of many households as we enter the last few shopping days before Christmas,” client strategy director at GfK Joe Staton said, adding that there will be no “rebound in confidence anytime soon.”

Inflation in the UK reached 10.7% in November, according to the Office for National Statistics, which is more than five times the 2% target. With no “fiscal good news” coming economists warn there will continue to be a “deep and protracted fall in living standards.”

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