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Economy

Consumer confidence drops further in May

GfK’s long-running Consumer Confidence Index has decreased by one point to -34 for May, as the Covid-19 pandemic continues.

The measure for the general economic situation of the country during the last 12 months has dropped seven points to -55, 25 points lower than in May 2019.

Additionally, expectations for the general economic situation over the next 12 months are down one point at -54 points, which is 25 points lower compared with the same period last year.

Despite this, the major purchase index increased two points to -47 in May, but is still 48 points lower than it was during the same month last year.

Joe Staton, GfK’s client strategy director, said: “At -34, consumer confidence remains battered and bruised despite efforts at loosening the Covid-19 restrictions.

“With unemployment claims rising by the highest rate on record and warnings of a severe recession and possible tax hikes, the damage done by the coronavirus pandemic to the UK economic landscape has been laid bare.”

He added: “The lower scores we have registered on the general economic situation reflect this and the Government is dampening down expectations of an immediate economic bounce back. So despite plans to get the country up and running, consumers feel we are not out of the woods yet.

“Confidence will remain fragile for some time and the possibility of another spike in Covid-19 cases as we adapt to the ‘new normal’ is an obvious danger.”

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