herald

Monday 23 October 2017

Consumer confidence is continuing to rise

SPENDING

RISING house prices and low European interest rates have helped to improve the mood of consumers.

Last month the European Central Bank cut its key lending rate to an all-time low of just 0.15pc.

This gave another boost to close to 375,000 homeowners who have tracker mortgages.

Now new data shows that consumer confidence picked up last month, with the improvement being put down to the ECB rate reduction and rising property prices. The rise in consumer confidence in June came after a sharp fall the previous month.

The index of consumer confidence, put together by KBC Bank and the Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), rose to 81.1 in June, up from 79.4 in May.

The gradual pick-up in consumer confidence was due to the fact that householders feel the recovery is taking hold, but many people have yet to feel the benefits of better figures on job creation and house price growth, KBC Bank economist Austin Hughes said.

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