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U.K. Consumer Confidence Jumps to Highest in More Than 15 Years

U.K. consumer confidence got a post-election bounce in June, rising to its highest level in more than 15 years.

According to GfK, consumer market research agency, its sentiment index jumped 6 points in June to 7. That’s the best reading since January 2000.

The sub components in the appraisal -- measuring everything from consumers’ view of their finances to willingness to splash out on big-ticket items -- also increased. The report is the first from GfK since the May 7 general election; questioning for last month’s index began before the ballot.

Consumers have helped the U.K. economy to 9 straight quarters of growth, offsetting weak external demand and threats from the crisis in Greece. Joe Staton, head of Market Dynamics at GfK, said the “dramatic uptick” in confidence this month shows there is a “real  spring in the step of consumers.”

Staton also said the optimism “could also translate into a busy time for retailers.” Within the GfK index, the so-called major-purchase estimate jumped 14 points to 16 in June.

The pound rose for the first time in six days on July the 3rd against the dollar as a gauge of  U.K. services growth accelerated in June more than economists predicted.

  

By Anna Maximova, PhD in economics

(Adopted from Bloomberg business news)