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Consumer confidence hits new low

Consumer confidence has fallen to a record low, with just one in five people optimistic that the recession will be over within a year.

According to the latest consumer confidence survey from market research company Nielsen and the British Retail Consortium, 84% of people in the UK believe the country is in recession, up from 65% in May.

Only 18% think the country will be out of recession within a year.

The twice-yearly survey asks consumers their thoughts and feelings on job prospects, personal finances, spending intentions and major concerns.

60% of people surveyed said their own personal finances are ‘not so good’ or ‘bad’, 69% of people said that now was ‘not a good time’ or a ‘bad time’ to buy the things they want or need, and 70% reckoned their job prospects were ‘not so good’ or ‘bad’.

Stephen Roberts, British Retail Consortium director general, said: "With only one in five people believing recession will be over this time next year, it’s certainly going to be a tough Christmas and New Year. But there are reasons for optimism, with the Bank of England’s shock rate cut expected to get the economy’s heart beating again. Some key costs are falling, bringing shop prices down, and retailers are fighting back with promotions and price cuts. This can be good time to be a customer."

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