When the Chancellor delivers his Autumn Statement today, he’ll be feeling better than this time last year. Since then, the economy’s started to grow and consumers are feeling more confident about its prospects.
Our latest survey finds that two in five people think the economy will grow next year. It was just one in five people at this point last year.
Announcements from the Government this week have also highlighted their intention to tackle the cost of energy bills. Given that 81% of people in our recent poll said that cutting energy costs would improve their standard of living (with nearly half saying it would make a ‘great difference’), it’s encouraging that the Government has listened to our calls to cut bills.
The squeeze on consumers
All of this is clearly good news. But we still have a long way to go. In the same survey we find that only 16% of people think that renewed growth in the economy has fed through into their standard of living. And more people than not think their personal finances will get worse next year.
This is a reflection of the squeeze on consumers that we have been highlighting for some time, and is the reason why these welcome measures on energy bills must only be the start. Much more will need to be done in future to ensure that both living standards keep pace with growth in the economy, and more people feel the squeeze ease.
Of course, we’ll be working to make that happen. So we want to hear from you about how the costs of essentials are impacting on you. Are you starting to feel the squeeze lifting? What would make the biggest improvement to your living standards in the future?