Consumer confidence in Britain takes a dive | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 08.07.2016
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Consumer confidence in Britain takes a dive

Market researchers have said consumer confidence in the UK has dropped markedly after the nation's decision to leave the European Union. Only clear and calm leadership could restore faith, people argued in a poll.

British consumer morale suffered its biggest drop in more than 20 years after last month's decision by voters to leave the EU, a special post-Brexit survey by market research group GfK revealed Friday.

The post-referendum poll saw confidence among consumers fall a full 8 points from -1 to -9, marking the steepest decline since December 1994.

The GfK survey is one of the first clear signs that British households, a key driver of the economy, have been unsettled by the June 23 vote, with its outcome causing political chaos and sending sterling to a 31-year low against the greenback.

Respondents agreed the best thing right now would be clear and calm leadership in shaping the UK's future outside the European Union.

Spending patterns to change

GfK reported that 60 percent of those polled expected the general economic situation to worsen in the next 12 months, up from 46 percent in June.

The proportion of people, who believed prices would increase rapidly over the same period, jumped by 20 percentage points from 13 percent to 33 percent.

"Our analysis suggests that in the immediate aftermath of the referendum sectors like travel, fashion, lifestyle and grocery are particularly vulnerable to consumers cutting back their discretionary spending," said Joe Staton, head of market dynamics at GfK.

hg/jd (Reuters, GfK)

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