Upward trend in consumer confidence buoys market

Consumer confidence is on the rise for the second quarter in a row, according to News International Commercial’s consumer survey.

And one in ten of those questioned has tried an own-label brand for the first time during the survey period.

Confidence has risen by three points to -32 in the period March to June, up from -35 in March and -41 in December, according to the publisher’s Consumer Eye panel.

Consumer Eye is a quarterly survey of more than 3,000 readers of News International titles. Only 27% of those polled think that the consumer outlook will worsen in the next three months, compared to 34% last quarter. This is attributed to less concern among consumers about savings and more optimism about property values.

The survey also showed 38% of the panel have tried different brands as they seek out cheaper alternatives and 32% have increased the amount of own-label products they buy.

Latest Office for National Statistics data supports the bargain-hunting trend as it shows retail sales volumes dropped in May by 0.6% on April and were down 1.6% year on year, with clothing and footwear particularly hit.

Consumers are looking to make their household budgets stretch further and 49% of those polled said they are paying more attention to advertised offers, with 51% citing newspaper ads as the top source to find out about offers, 39% stating their information comes from TV and 24% from internet ads.

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