GfK’s Consumer Confidence Index increased three points in March 2018. With increases across the board on feelings on personal finances, the general economy and purchase intentions, all five of the constituent measures recorded higher values.

The Major Purchase Index increased two points to +2 – four points lower than March 2017.

Joe Staton, head of experience innovation UK at GfK, says: "Despite the Beast from the East leaving the nation shivering under a blanket of snow, stoic UK consumers turned faintly bullish this March with a three-point uptick in the Overall Index Score to -7.

"Spring is in the air, with increases across the board on personal finances, the general economy – over the last year and next year – and on current major purchase intentions. The prospect of wage rises finally outstripping declining inflation, high levels of employment with low-level interest rates, and finally some movement on the Brexit front appear to have boosted our spirits.

"It’s still a little early to be talking about green shoots, and the core score is of course still negative, but this is definitely a movement in the right direction. Consumers are feeling a tiny spring in their step – let’s see next month if April showers dampen the mood."