Consumer confidence in Northern Ireland dips over Stormont and Brexit

By Clodagh Rice
BBC News NI Business Correspondent

  • Published
  • comments
People exchanging moneyImage source, AFP
Image caption,
Many people feel worse off than last year, says Danske Bank

Consumer confidence in Northern Ireland fell again in the three months to the end of September, according to a survey by Danske Bank.

It said the fall was driven by heightened uncertainty around Brexit and a further period without an executive in place at Stormont.

Danske Bank surveyed more than 1,000 people, with 25% saying they felt worse off financially than last year.

A fall in confidence is thought to have a knock-on effect on spending.

One quarter of respondents said they expected to spend less in the year ahead on big ticket items like holidays and furniture.

Adverse impact

A similar proportion (24%)said they expected their finances to worsen in the year ahead.

Conor Lambe, Danske Bank chief economist, said 23% of respondents noted progress in the Brexit negotiations in recent months had the largest negative impact on how they were feeling.

"A further 9% highlighted the UK government's longer-term Brexit objectives as a factor adversely impacting them," he said.

"In addition to Brexit, more than a quarter of people pointed to the ongoing political stalemate at Stormont as something which put a dent in confidence."