Consumer Confidence Recovers After Brexit Hit

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Consumer confidence partly recovered this month as Britons chose to carry on spending rather than saving after the Brexit vote.

Market research firm GfK’s headline consumer confidence reading was -7 for August.

That was up from -12 in July when the index saw its sharpest drop in 26 years, following the EU referendum.

The report from also indicated a steep fall in saving as interest rates hit a new historic low.

Meanwhile there was a rise in its index of demand for major purchases, such as cars.

Joe Staton, head of market dynamics at GfK, said: “We’re reporting some recovery in the index this month as consumers settle into the new wait-and-see reality of a post-Brexit, pre-exit UK.”

The improved reading was partly driven by better than expected economic data following the referendum, including July’s 1.4% rise in retail sales.

Consumer sentiment was also lifted by the cut in interest rates to 0.25%, low prices and high levels of employment.

Mr Staton said: “We Brits are clearly determined to carry on shopping for today rather than saving for tomorrow.”

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