Job Security, House-Price Fears Erode U.K. Consumers' Confidence

(Bloomberg) -- U.K. consumer confidence slid this month as Britons felt less secure about their jobs and the value of their houses.

A gauge by the Centre for Economics and Business Research and YouGov fell to 108.4 from 109.8 in April, according to a report Friday. A measure of job security over the next 12 months dropped the most in almost five years.

The U.K. economy barely grew in the first quarter as consumption took a hit from bad weather. While a report Thursday showed retail sales rebounded more than expected in April, the overall trend remains subdued.

At the same time, Britons are just now emerging from a year of shrinking real incomes after the vote to leave the European Union lowered the pound and stoked inflation. That trend has hurt some of the biggest names in U.K. retail, with Marks & Spencer Group Plc saying this week it will shut a third of its large stores.

“Consumers have taken note of the U.K. economy’s recent woes and adjusted their expectations accordingly,” said Nina Skero, head of macroeconomics at the CEBR. “If confidence doesn’t recover soon it could damage second-quarter growth prospects.”

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