UK Consumer Sentiment Returns To Two-Year High, GfK Survey Shows

By Reuters
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UK Consumer Sentiment Returns To Two-Year High, GfK Survey Shows

British consumer sentiment returned to a two-year high this month as households took a more positive view of the economy and their own finances, a long-running survey showed.

The GfK consumer confidence index rose to -19 in April from -21 in March, matching January's reading which was the highest since January 2022, just before Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine triggered a surge in energy costs and other bills.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast a slightly smaller rise to -20. A year ago, the index stood at -30.

"These improvements reflect the impact on household budgets of lower inflation and the anticipation of further tax cuts," GfK client strategy director Joe Staton said.

"However, we are a long way from the much firmer sentiment last seen in the period before Brexit, Covid and the conflict in Ukraine," Staton said.



Inflation fell to a two-and-a-half year low of 3.2% in March, and April brought a nearly 10% increase in Britain's minimum wage as well as a 2 percentage point cut in the rate of national insurance contributions paid by employees.

Finance minister Jeremy Hunt has said he wants to cut taxes further if there is room in the public finances before Prime Minister Rishi Sunak calls an election, expected in the second half of this year.

Elsewhere, Ocado emerged as the fastest-growing retailer in the UK grocery market in the 12 weeks to 14 April, according to new data from Kantar, with the online operator seeing 12.5% growth, performing ahead of the total online market.

Online grocery hit its highest level since July 2022 in the period, rising to 12% of the overall market, Kantar said.

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