Big ticket confidence improves during June

GfK’s long-running Consumer Confidence Index increased six points to -30 for June, as all five measures were up in comparison to the 3rd COVID-19 flash of June 5th.

The Major Purchase Index has increased nine points to -32 in June; this is 30 points lower than it was in June 2019.

The measure for the general economic situation of the country during the last 12 months has improved by one point to -59; this is 27 points lower than in June 2019.  

The index measuring changes in personal finances during the last 12 months is up one point to -9; this is eight points lower than June 2019. 

The Savings Index has improved by four points in June to +16; this is three points lower than at this time last year.

Joe Staton, GfK’s Client Strategy Director, comments: “We have a six-point uptick in the Overall Index Score with all measures up and particularly strong increases in future perceptions of personal finances and the economy. But we still have a story that’s about negative numbers so it’s too early to say that consumers are moving on from the COVID-19 crisis.

“The initial fall we announced on April 6th (-9 down to -34) was the biggest ever since this survey’s origins in 1974. You have to go way back to the 1979 oil crisis to find anything that comes close.This latest improvement may be misleading.

“Consumers appear to be confused and some are not sure what to think. Yes, we have seen queues as some shoppers return to battered high streets. But with economists warning that the post-lockdown upturn might not restore GDP to pre-COVID-19 levels, and with the labour market set for more job losses, we have to question whether we are seeing early signs of economic recovery or that infamous ‘dead cat bounce’. Most bets at present will be on the dead cat.”