U.K. Consumers Become Less Cautious as Virus Lockdown Lifts
(Bloomberg) -- U.K. households became slightly less cautious in June as the coronavirus lockdown started to ease.
Consumers repaid just 86 million pounds ($111 million) of debt in the month, the Bank of England said Wednesday, the lowest amount since February. Meanwhile, mortgage approvals picked up to 40,000 -- the highest since March.
The critical issue for the economic recovery is whether shoppers’ confidence continues to improve as activity opens up and government support runs out starting next month.
The government has helped pay the wages of more than 9 million jobs during the crisis to prevent a spike in unemployment, while some shops remain closed and social distancing measures mean that consumption can’t yet return to normal.
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