What you need to know

2018 was a sluggish year for the British economy, but consumer spending continued to grow, underpinned by positive real wage growth across the year as inflation slowed and average weekly earnings increased.

However, while people’s confidence in their own financial situation continues to hold up, the uncertainty surrounding Brexit is fuelling widespread concerns about the future of the economy. Should this start to impact people’s confidence in their own finances, the result could be a sharp downturn in consumer spending.

That said, although Brexit is currently dominating the national debate, it is important to recognise that, there are other important purchase drivers. The consumer understanding of corporate behaviour has become far more nuanced in recent years, and brands are being held to a higher standard than ever. In this Report, Mintel has examined what this means for consumer behaviour and, in particular, whether people hold local businesses to a different set of standards to multinational corporations.

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