Consumer confidence improved among Londoners in October despite the national average falling to its lowest level since February 2009, a survey has found.
The capital’s reading has now improved for two months running and is the highest of any UK region, according to GfK NOP’s research.
London’s reading for October was measured at minus 24, some three points higher than it was in September. However, consumer confidence in the capital is seven points down on the same month last year.
Consumer confidence across the UK fell by two points to minus 32 and is now 13 points lower than in October last year, with people growing increasingly concerned about the country’s gloomy economic outlook.
GfK NOP Social Research managing director Nick Moon said: “The latest index shows consumer confidence at its 10th lowest figure since it began in 1974. In fact, it is only the third occasion in its history that it has breached minus 32. On both previous occasions – June 2008 and March 1990 – consumer confidence was entering periods of sustained weakness and the UK economy was going into recession.
“At this point in time, consumers’ outlook is becoming increasingly pessimistic about the UK’s general economic situation over the coming year. Additionally, the climate for major purchases has worsened, suggesting the government can’t rely on people spending their way out of the double-dip recession that is likely to be on the horizon.”
Londoners are still downbeat about the financial situation of their household over the last 12 months, providing a reading of minus 17 for October. However, the measurement has improved by two points on September’s figures and is seven points above the national average of minus 24.
Consumers in the capital are a little gloomier about their financial situation over the next 12 months than they were in September. A reading of minus three was taken in October, down one point on September’s survey, however this is much higher than the national average of minus 10.
People in London also seem to be more optimistic about the general economic situation in the country than the rest of the UK. The confidence of consumers in the economic situation over the last 12 months is eight points ahead of the national average, while London’s reading for the next year is some nine points higher than the UK average.