Consumers ‘worried about economy’

Consumers in the UK are finding it tough to stay positive about the current state of the country's economy.

Research by Which? has found that 6…

Consumers in the UK are finding it tough to stay positive about the current state of the country's economy.

Research by Which? has found that 68 per cent view the current financial situation as poor, while 44 per cent believe it will only get worse in the next 12 months as households brace themselves for a tough 2013.

Indeed, only 24 per cent of individuals are living comfortably on their present income, while 46 per cent turned to new credit ahead of December, which could possibly be to cover the cost of Christmas.

Only 27 per cent of respondents think their financial situation is going to improve in the next year, but 54 per cent expect household budgets to be tighter than in 2012. It would not be surprising if people had to turn to debt help in an effort to get through their circumstances, as many will be facing an increase in their personal debt levels.

If individuals do find themselves in trouble, then checking out a debt management plan might be a good idea. This measure offers consumers the opportunity to reduce their monthly repayments, while creditors should also stop bothering them once an agreement is in place.

Which? executive director Richard Lloyd said consumer confidence is very low at the moment, as not everyone trusts the government to turn the economy around.

"News that the economy flat lined in 2012 comes as no surprise – we repeatedly warned that low consumer confidence suggested growth in the last quarter was unsustainable. Britain's struggling households are weary of continually having to cut spending, or worse take out credit to pay for essentials and can see no improvement in their situation in the next year," he added.

He added the situation is compounded by the fact there is now a real threat of a triple-dip recession, while the costs of food, energy and fuel look set to carry on rising. Have your household expenses increased recently? 

By James Francis

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