Brexit Progress Gives U.K. Shoppers Christmas Confidence Boost

A shopper on Oxford Street in London on Dec. 21. 

Photographer: Luke MacGregor/Bloomberg

U.K. consumer confidence edged higher this month after Brexit talks finally showed signs of progress.

YouGov and the Centre for Economics and Business Research said their optimism index rose from its lowest level since the aftermath of the Brexit vote, driven by the breakthrough in the government’s negotiations with the European Union and greater confidence in property prices. Still, the score for household finances over the past 30 days deteriorated to its lowest since January 2014.

Read more: BOE says Brexit advances may lift sentiment

“With Brexit heavily dominating U.K. press coverage as well as the economic and political agenda, it is little surprise that consumer confidence is highly susceptible to the latest negotiation developments, ” said Nina Skero, CEBR’s head of macroeconomics.

A separate report from Lloyds showed business confidence climbed to a five-month high in December. The survey also showed that firms optimism about the wider economy remained low.

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