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London, 20.08.2021

UK Consumer Confidence holds fast to pre-pandemic levels at – 8 in August

Expectations for personal finances in coming year are holding up well  

GfK’s long-running Consumer Confidence Index decreased to -8 in August. Two measures were up in comparison to the July 23rd announcement, two measures were down and one stayed the same.

Joe Staton, Client Strategy Director GfK, says: “Against a backdrop of cooling headline inflation and soaring house prices, the UK consumer confidence index is stable at minus 8 this August. Importantly, expectations for our personal financial situation for the coming 12 months are holding up and this positivity bodes well for the economy going forwards this year and next. Interestingly, this month the five-point fall in the major purchase index is counterbalanced by the five-point rise in the savings index, suggesting that consumers could be considering switching into saving rather than spending. Indeed, UK consumers have built their savings to record levels during COVID. With the economy continuing to open up and GDP bouncing back, the overall picture for the economic health of the nation is looking good for the remainder of 2021. There are compelling reasons here to be cheerful as we begin to put the hardest pandemic months behind us.”

UK Consumer Confidence Measures – August 2021

The Overall Index Score decreased to -8 in August. Two measures were up in comparison to the July 23rd announcement, two measures were down, and one stayed the same.

Personal Financial Situation

The index measuring changes in personal finances over the last 12 months is up one point at 0; this is five points better than August 2020.

The forecast for personal finances over the next 12 months has stayed the same at +11; this is 10 points higher than this time last year.

General Economic Situation

The measure for the general economic situation of the country during the last 12 months is up one point at -42; this is 20 points higher than in August 2020. 

Expectations for the general economic situation over the coming 12 months have dipped by one point to -6; but this is still 36 points higher than August 2020.

Major Purchase Index

The Major Purchase Index has decreased by five points to -3 in August; this is still 22 points higher than it was this month last year.

Savings Index

The Savings Index is up five points to +25 in August; this is four points higher than this time last year.

Download the data charts:  GfK UK Consumer Confidence Barometer Charts - August 2021.pdf

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About the survey

  • The UK Consumer Confidence Barometer is conducted by GfK.
  • This month’s survey was conducted among a sample of 2,000 individuals aged 16+.
  • Quotas are imposed on age, sex, region and social class to ensure the final sample is representative of the UK population.
  • Interviewing was carried out between August 2nd and August 12th.
  • The figures contained within the Consumer Confidence Barometer have an estimated margin of error of +/-2%.
  • The Overall Index Score is calculated using underlying data that runs to two decimal points.
  • The confirmed date of the next press release is September 24th. The remaining dates for 2021 are: October 22nd, November 19th and December 23rd
  • Any published material requires a reference to GfK e.g. ‘Research carried out by GfK’.
  • This study has been running since 1974. Back data is available from 2006. 
  • The table below is an overview of the questions asked to obtain the individual index measures:  

Personal Financial Situation(Q1/Q2)
This index is based on the following questions to consumers: ‘How has the financial situation of your household changed over the last 12 months?’‘How do you expect the financial position of your household to change over the next 12 months?’ (a lot better – a little better – stay(ed) the same – a little worse – a lot worse)
General Economic Situation(Q3/Q4) This index is based on the following questions to consumers: ‘How do you think the general economic situation in this country has changed over the last 12 months?’‘How do you expect the general economic situation in this country to develop over the next 12 months?’(a lot better – a little better – stay(ed) the same – a little worse - a lot worse)
Major Purchase Index(Q8) This index is based on the following question to consumers: ‘In view of the general economic situation, do you think now is the right time for people to make major purchases such as furniture or electrical goods?’(right time – neither right nor wrong time – wrong time)
Savings Index(Q10)  This index is based on the following question to consumers: ‘In view of the general economic situation do you think now is?’ (a very good time to save – a fairly good time to save – not a good time to save – a very bad time to save)(Commented on but not included in the Index Score)


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