Following the UK election result, exclusive new research from Mintel reveals just 8% of consumers think that the election result was good for their financial situation, with just a few more (15%) saying they thought it was good for the economy.

Commenting on the research, Richard Perks, spokesman for Mintel said:

“Most elections leave consumers feeling more optimistic. That’s not so this time. The election has led to even greater uncertainty. Conservative voters tend to be more positive, but Liberals and Labour attitudes are indistinguishable, in spite of the fact that the Liberals may well have a place in a government for the first time in over 80 years.

The overall impression is one of cynicism and negativity. Almost half of the respondents think that the result is bad for the economy – as if the election will make things worse than they already are. This is a remarkable assessment – other evidence from Mintel research shows that people’s concern over their financial prospects has steadily grown. They clearly recognise that, whatever the parties may have said before the elections, the reality is that the deficit is going to have to be financed and that means pain all round.

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The findings reinforce our initial assessment after the election that the outcome would make people more cautious and more reluctant to spend unnecessarily. Consumers are likely to revert to saving. They will seek to pay off debt and will do so at the expense of saving. They will spend no more than they feel they have to. Initially they will cut back on spending on big ticket items, but as incomes are squeezed the cuts will extend to fashion and lead to more trading down in food. Indeed, our research findings make it clear that there are tough times ahead for consumer sectors. “

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