(SHARECAST) – Consumer confidence stabilised in February, but remains low amid continuing economic worries, show new figures from the research group GfK NOP.
GfK NOP’s Consumer Confidence Index rose by one point in February to -28 from -29 the previous month.
“The statistically insignificant increase shows that while consumer confidence has stabilised, it has not bounced back,” said Nick Moon, managing director of social research at GfK NOP.
“Overall confidence remains low and, although it has not reached the depths of two years ago, the fact that it is 10 points down on six months ago, and 14 points down on a year ago, represents a significant setback to hopes of recovery.”
The data comes the day after the CBI reported that high-street sales growth slowed significantly in February compared with the same month last year and that retailers are braced for flat sales next month.
Moon said that, while the government will be pleased that consumer confidence has levelled out, the tiny increase shows that last month’s astonishing figures were not an aberration.
“With the government’s strategy based heavily on economic growth providing private sector jobs to replace the ones being cut, they will have to hope that consumer confidence is a less good predictor of the economy than previously,” added Moon.