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UK Consumer Confidence Weakens Sharply In March: GfK

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UK consumer confidence weakened for the fourth straight month in March as the cost of living crisis deepened, survey results from the market research group GfK showed on Friday.

The consumer confidence index fell to -31 in March from -26 in February. All five components of the index decreased from February.

The survey was conducted among 2,000 individuals between March 1 and 14.

The index measuring changes in personal finances over the last twelve months dropped two points to -13 and the forecast for personal finances decreased four points to -18.

The measure for the general economic situation over the year was one point lower at -51 in March. Likewise, expectations for the general economic situation slid six points to -49.

The Major Purchase Index plunged nine points to -24 in March. The savings index rose four points to +18 in March.

“Consumers across the UK are experiencing the impact of soaring living costs with 30-year-high levels of inflation, record-high fuel and food prices, a recent interest-rate hike and the prospect of more increases to come, and higher taxation too – all against a background of stagnant pay rises that cannot compensate for the financial duress,” Joe Staton, client strategy director GfK, said.

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