Growing pessimism among the public about the health of Britain’s economy

There is growing pessimism among the public about the health of Britain’s economy. Ipsos Economic Optimism Index falls to its lowest level since 2011.

The author(s)
  • Gideon Skinner UK Head of Political Research
  • Glenn Gottfried Public Affairs, Ipsos North
Get in touch

Growing pessimism among the public about the health of Britain’s economy

Ipsos Economic Optimism Index at its lowest since 2011

A majority of Britons (54%) believe that the country’s economy will get worse over the next 12 months, according to the latest Ipsos Political Monitor, up 11 points from when last asked in May. Fourteen percent think the economy will improve (down 13 points) and 28% think it will stay the same (up 5 points). This leaves this month’s Ipsos Economic Optimism Index score at -40 (down 24 points). This is the most pessimistic balance of opinion about the economy since December 2011, when the EOI score was -48 (12% said it would improve and 60% said it would get worse).

Ipsos Economic Optimism Index

Younger people are more pessimistic about the economy than older people. Two-thirds (66%) of 18-34 year olds think the economy will get worse (7% say it will get better) compared with just under half (47%) of those aged 55+ (of whom 20% say it will get better). Six in ten women (58%) think Britain’s economic condition will get worse compared with half (49%) of men (12% of women think it will get better vs. 15% of men).

There are also notable party differences when it comes to economic optimism. Three quarters of Labour and Liberal Democrat supporters believe the economy will get worse (73% and 75% respectively) over the next 12 months, compared with three in ten (31%) Conservatives. Two in five (41%) Conservatives think the economic condition will stay the same, while a quarter (24%) think it will improve (compared with 8% of Labour and 13% Liberal Democrat supporters).

Gideon Skinner, Head of Political Research at Ipsos, said:

Pessimism about the economy has been steadily rising since 2015, but it has accelerated since May – especially for the young.

Technical note:

Ipsos interviewed a representative sample of 1,071 adults aged 18+ across Great Britain. Interviews were conducted by telephone 14th – 18th July 2017.  Data are weighted to the profile of the population.

The author(s)
  • Gideon Skinner UK Head of Political Research
  • Glenn Gottfried Public Affairs, Ipsos North

More insights about Public Sector

Society