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British Retail Consortium announces improved confidence

On the surface the report from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) has today cast a much brighter light on the UK economy with a suggestion that UK consumer confidence is currently at an 18 month high. The report is a boost to those looking for a turnaround in the UK although there are some issues which need to be addressed and considered.

The report, while positive on the whole, also confirmed that 70% of people in the UK are spending less on clothes, gas and electricity in order to reduce their expenditure on the ever rising cost of living. While slowly but surely expenditure in these areas will return to "traditional" levels there is a feeling that we are still some way off a full-blown recovery in the UK.

The BRC consumer confidence index itself currently stands at 75 compared to the all-time low in April 2009 of 65. It was also interesting to see that 25% of those surveyed believe job prospects in the UK will be "bad" over the next year while 20% are more positive with regards to employment opportunities and employment security. However, many people are seriously concerned about increasing personal debt and their ability to pay off these large amounts in the short to medium term, something which could possibly hold back consumer spending at least in the immediate future.

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