Consumer confidence in the U.K. grew five times faster than the global rate last year but, despite a wider backdrop of falling prices, shoppers are more reluctant to spend, research shows.
The U.K. Consumer Confidence Index hit 94 at the end of 2014, according to data published by information specialist Nielsen Tuesday, 10 points higher than at the end of 2013 and the highest level in over eight years.
Over the same period, consumer confidence around the world increased by just 2 points (to 96) while across Europe confidence increased 3 points (to 76). The U.K. was one of just 11 countries out of 60 around the world that reported double-digit confidence increases last year, Nielsen said.
The U.K. data was derived from Nielsen’s global survey of consumer confidence and spending intentions which was started in 2005. The index measures attitudes on topics including personal finances and job prospects each quarter among 30,000 internet consumers in 60 countries.
However, despite a rise in consumer confidence, U.K. shoppers were still reluctant to part with their cash, Neilsen found – a potential worry for an economy reliant on consumer spending.
This prudence on the behalf of of U.K. consumers comes in spite of a time of robust growth in the U.K. economy. Between the fourth quarter of 2013 and the same period last year, more Britons were feeling positive about their job prospects and the U.K. economy, the index showed.