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Just 36% feel confident in UK economy, report finds

Consumers’ confidence in the UK economy has slipped back to its lowest level since January 2018 – but people’s optimism regarding their own finances is holding up – a report has found.

Just over a third (36%) of people surveyed across the UK in December 2018 felt confident in the UK economy, the Lloyds Bank spending power report said.

This was the lowest percentage recorded since January last year – although it is a much more positive reading than in March 2011, when just 7% of people felt confident towards the UK economy.

The latest survey found that half (54%) of people felt pessimism towards inflation and even more (60%) were downbeat about the UK housing market.

Despite caution about the wider economy, people are feeling resilient about their personal finances, the survey found.

Nearly two-thirds (65%) feel good about their current situation – close to a peak of 68% recorded in September 2018.

More than four fifths (82%) feel secure in their job and 78% are happy with their level of disposable income.

Nearly a quarter (23%) of people think they will have more disposable income in six months’ time – although they are inclined to save it, with 73% planning to do this rather than spend it, with 43% expecting to make purchases.

Nearly half (47%) would pay off existing debts with any extra cash.

Robin Bulloch, managing director of Lloyds Bank, said: “While it is not the first time we have reported the resilience of people’s personal finances it has never been set against a backdrop of such heightened economic uncertainty.

“It’s really positive to see that people are able to feel confident in their own finances.

“At times like this, managing your money smartly remains key.”

More than 2,000 people aged 18 to 75 were surveyed for the latest report in December 2018.

Source: Yahoo Finance UK