Household finance gloom continues to drag down consumer confidence

Christien PhebyContent Manager
July 14, 2022, 11:03 AM GMT+0
  • Consumer confidence declines by -1.2 points – marking seven months of decline  

  • Households report that their finances worsened in the past month (-3.7), while outlook also deteriorated (-3.5)  

  • Outlook for business activity became more pessimistic (-3.4) 

  • Homeowners believe their properties became more valuable over the past month (+3.3) but expectations for the year ahead declined (-0.9)  

Amid rising global inflation and an ongoing cost of living crisis, consumer confidence declined for the seventh month in a row, according to new analysis from YouGov and the Centre for Economic and Business Research (Cebr). The index dropped from 102.3 to 101.1 (-1.2) – the lowest it has been since August 2020 – largely due to outlook worsening across several metrics.   

YouGov collects consumer confidence data every day, conducting over 6,000 interviews a month. Respondents answer questions about household finances, property prices, job security and business activity, both over the past 30 days and looking ahead to the next 12 months.  

After a brief reprieve in May, June saw perceptions of household finances fall once again. Measures for the past month dropped by 3.7 points from 58.8 to 55.1 – taking them to yet another in a series of all-time lows this year – while outlook tumbled by 3.5 points from 52.2 to 48.7. With inflation at its highest rate for 40 years, and with the energy price cap set to rise again in October, public sentiment could well get worse before it gets better. 

Business activity measures (how busy workers say their workplace was over the past month, or how busy they expect it to be over the next 12 months) saw similar deterioration. The retrospective metric saw a decline of 1.8 points from 112.3 to 110.5, while expectations for the year ahead slumped by 3.4 points. Both metrics remain positive overall.    

Feelings among the nation’s homeowners were more of a mixed bag. Our house value index for the past month jumped from 129.7 to 133.1 (+3.3.), but outlook declined from 130.9 to 130.1 (-0.9)*. Job security metrics among workers saw little movement, rising by 0.2 points for the forward-looking and retrospective measures alike.  

*Scores rounded to the nearest 0.1.