Household cutbacks across the board as consumer sentiment continues to fall, reports PwC
Consumer sentiment is now worse than during austerity measures in 2012, with five quarters of steady decline according to the latest PwC research. And although all socioeconomic groups are now feeling the pinch, those between 45–64 years are feeling it the worst.
PwC’s latest Consumer Sentiment survey reported a continued decline in consumer confidence for the fifth consecutive quarter. Sentiment has dropped a further 8 points taking the score from -36 to -44.
The index measures consumers’ expectations for their household financial situation and has historically been a good predictor of future consumer spending patterns. The -44 sentiment now sits 2 points below its worst point in the post-recession austerity period in 2012 (-42), but above the record low sentiment at the start of the global financial crisis in 2008 (-51). The research marked a significant drop from the start of the pandemic, when then the score sat at -26 then rose throughout 2021, with confidence being restored through vaccine roll-out and as lockdown restrictions were loosened.
The 55–64 years category has the most negative sentiment of all age groups with a score of -63, a lower score than over 65s at -59 who typically have lower monthly outgoings and more financial protection through savings or pensions. The youthful 18–24 category is now also in negative sentiment for the first time since the start of the pandemic.
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