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Forthcoming austerity measures hit consumer confidence

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Concerns over the likely impact of government spending cuts are having an adverse effect on consumer confidence, a new report has revealed.

The latest GfK NOP survey found that the upturn in confidence recorded in August turned into a dip in September.

The consumer confidence index fell two points to -20.

Consumers expressed pessimism over the state of their personal finances during the last 12 months and about prospects for the coming year.

Nick Moon, managing director of GfK NOP social research, said: “September’s slump suggests the rise in consumer confidence in August was a false dawn, as feared.

“Besides the trough in July, probably caused by the emergency budget, this month’s figure is the lowest confidence has been for the past year. I think we could be about to find out if the money markets are more worried about double dip recession than they are about the size of the UK deficit.

“They were similarly downbeat about the past and future performance of the economy overall.”