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Britons turn more downbeat about finances as inflation rises By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO – A customer stands before empty shelves at a meat section in a grocery store in Liverpool, Britain on September 20, 2021. REUTERS/Phil Noble

LONDON (Reuters) – People in Britain have reported a first worsening in their financial situation in more than a year as inflation pushes up the cost of living, a survey showed on Wednesday.

Scottish Widows published the Household Finance Index, which is an insurance and pensions company. It fell from 44.7 to 44.0 during the first quarter.

When Britain was experiencing its first coronavirus attack, it was the third quarter of 2020 that the index fell from one quarter into the next.

The first increase in income from work was seen since the beginning of last year. The Scottish Widows stated that households now have less money for discretionary purchases as the prices of essential goods rose.

The main measure of inflation in Britain rose to 3.2% in August. However, the Bank of England anticipates that it will rise to 4% after the Bank of England’s post-lockdown opening of the economy around the globe and at home leads to supply and demand shortages.

The outlook for the financial future of households was also less positive in the last 12 months.

The survey, which was published last week, showed that there were growing concerns about energy bills and food prices. These worries led to a decrease in British consumer confidence.

Another report by a group of recruiters showed that while employers felt less optimistic about their ability to hire in the period from August, they still had high plans for hiring new employees.

The Recruitment & Employment Confederation survey was conducted before the recent escalation of supply chain problems which led the BoE last week to lower its estimate for economic growth in the third quarter.

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