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UK consumer confidence continued to improve in August as falling inflation has boosted economic expectations.

GfK’s long-running Consumer Confidence Index increased five points to -25 in August, with all measures up in comparison to last month’s announcement.

The index measuring changes in personal finances during the last year is up five points at -15, which is 10 points better than August 2022.

The forecast for personal finances over the next 12 months increased four points to -3, now 28 points higher than this time last year.

The measure for the general economic situation of the country during the last 12 months was up six points at -52 and 16 points higher than in August 2022.

Expectations for the general economic situation over the next 12 months increased by three points to -30, which is 30 points better than August 2022.

Joe Staton, Client Strategy Director GfK, commented: “Against a backdrop of falling core inflation, higher interest rates and rising average weekly earnings, the Consumer Confidence Index has regained momentum this month with a welcome five-point improvement.

“Although the headline figure remains strongly negative at -25, hopes for our personal financial situation for the coming year are heading back towards positive territory, a metric that is key to indicating the future financial position of households.

“This renewed optimism can also be seen in the similar turnaround for our view on the general economic outlook for the next 12 months, and the eight-point advance in major purchase intentions is potentially better news for retailers as we move into autumn. However, while the financial pulse of the nation is still weak, these signs of optimism are welcome during this challenging time for consumers across the UK.”

Morning update

Greencore has announced it has completed its share buyback programme, which commenced on 30 May 2023.

On 24 May 2022, the Company announced its intention to recommence value return of up to £50 million over the following two years consistent with the Group’s capital management policy.

The completion of this buyback means that the Company has now returned £35 million to shareholders via share buyback since then.

Between 30 May 2023 and 24 August 2023, 12,068,961 million ordinary shares in the company were repurchased on the London Stock Exchange for cancellation at a weighted average price of £0.8285 per share.

This represented 2.436% of the issued share capital of the company when the programme commenced.

On the markets this morning, the FTSE 100 is up another 0.3% this morning to 7,353.1pts.

Early risers include Tesco, up 1.8% to 259.8p, C&C Group, up 1% to 138p and DS Smith, up 0.9% to 292.5p.

Fallers include Virgin Wines, down 2.3% to 45p, THG, down 1.8% to 90.6p and Hilton Food Group, down 1.7% to 659.5p.

Yesterday in the City

The FTSE 100 posted its third consecutive day of rises to close 0.2% higher at 7,333.6pts.

Risers included Virgin Wines, up 10.8% to 46p, Naked Wines, up 8% to 64.8p, THG, up 4.2% to 92.2p, Premier Foods, up 2.4% to 121p, PayPoint, up 2.1% to 545p, McBride, up 1.8% to 39.5p and FeverTree Drinks, up 1.8% to 1,263p.

Fallers included Bakkavor, down 4.3% to 96.2p, Just Eat, down 2.9% to 1,068p, Deliveroo, down 1.8% to 113.3p, Domino’s Pizza Group, down 0.8% to 387p and C&C Group, down 0.7% to 136.6p.