LONDON — A new survey showed that 45% of British people do not fully understand the consequences Brexit could have on the economy.
The survey, by ING and the Economics Network, asked 1,700 people questions about their understanding of economics and basic issues facing the British economy, as well as how they access economic news.
The findings shed some interesting light on the UK’s understanding of big economic issues.
“On Brexit, only 42% of respondents report that they understand the main economic consequences, outweighed by the 45% reporting that they do not understand them,” the report showed.
Brits largely reported being more clued up about the impacts of the falling pound — which has pushed up inflation, making everyday goods more expensive and squeezing UK consumers — since the Brexit vote, as the chart below illustrates:
The UK economy had fared better than all but the most optimistic of forecasters imagined in the immediate aftermath of the Brexit referendum, confounding predictions of an immediate recession, and ticking along with an almost complete disregard for the uncertainty created by the vote.
However, last week official GDP figures showed
UK GDP growth slowing to just 0.3% in the first quarter of 2017.
After close to 10 months of shockingly strong growth, the numbers confirmed what economists had been predicting for a long time — that Brexit will have a materially negative impact on the British economy.
The slowdown in GDP reflects a slowing of the consumer boom that has fuelled the country’s economic performance in the past handful of years.
With inflation set to rise further over the course of 2017, that consumer slowdown could intensify.