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Consumers and the Economic Outlook: Quarterly Update - UK - February 2015

“People are finally starting to feel the benefit of the recovery in their pay packets. After five years, average wages are finally increasing more quickly than prices. Although this will take time to feed through into consumer confidence, there are signs that spending habits are changing.

People are making more use of credit, for example, showing that they’re confident enough to bring forward spending in the expectation of future pay rises. And Mintel’s research showed an increase in planned financial activity in January, particularly when it comes to big-ticket purchases such as holidays and home improvements.”
– Toby Clark, Director of Research, EMEA

This report looks at the following areas:

  • An end to the income squeeze, but people are still wary
  • Millennials are leading confidence upwards

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Table of contents

  1. Key Findings

      • An end to the income squeeze, but people are still wary
        • Millennials are leading confidence upwards
          • Key economic indicators
            • Figure 1: Key economic indicators, January 2015
        • Current Financial Situation

          • Will the feel-good factor return in time for the 2015 election?
            • Figure 2: “How would you generally describe your financial situation at the moment?”, January 2015
          • The economic recovery will take time to feed through into consumer sentiment
            • Figure 3: Financial wellbeing index, 2009-15
          • Generation X are feeling the squeeze
            • Figure 4: “How would you generally describe your financial situation at the moment?”, by age, January 2015
        • Changes in Financial Wellbeing

          • 23% say that they’re better off than at the start of 2014
              • Figure 5: “How would you describe your finances compared to a year ago?”, January 2015
            • Two years of stability
              • Figure 6: The recovery index, 2011-15
            • More than a third of Millennials say their finances have improved…
              • …while 10% of baby boomers say that they are much worse off
                • Figure 7: “How have your finances changed over the last 12 months?”, by age, January 2015
            • Financial Confidence

              • Confidence edged upwards in January 2015
                  • Figure 8: “And how do you feel about your financial situation over the next year or so?”, January 2015
                  • Figure 9: Financial confidence index, 2009-2015
                • Generation Xers are facing an uncertain future
                  • Figure 10: “And how do you feel about your financial situation over the next year or so?”, by household income, January 2015
              • Spending Plans

                • A New Year boost to spending plans…
                  • …and there are clear signs that people are looking for an excuse to spend
                    • Figure 11: “Thinking about how you spend your money, which of the following have you done over the last three months? And which do you plan to do over the next three months?”, January 2015
                    • Figure 12: Spending index, 2012-2015
                  • Youthful enthusiasm? Or just a lack of responsibilities?
                    • Figure 13: Spending index, by household income, January 2015
                • What it Means

                  • Expect improvement – But not elation
                    • New year, new washing machine?

                    Consumers and the Economic Outlook: Quarterly Update - UK - February 2015

                    US $1,321.06 (Excl.Tax)