Consumers are expecting a recession, a new survey of public opinion has revealed.
The study by GfK/NOP suggests faith in the economy has fallen to levels not seen since a previous economic low in 1990.
Rachael Joy from the group said: "Consumers' confidence in the economy over the next year, plus a reluctance to make major purchases, reflect the popular expectation of a recession."
Negative perceptions have also dogged the commercial property market. Despite falls, it is now regarded as being at a "turning point", Gerry Ferguson, head of UK property fund management at Scottish Widows Investment Partnership, told the Financial Times Advisor.
The GfK/NOP consumer confidence index fell five points to -29. It also revealed a further five points drop from its general health of the economy measurement.
Consumer confidence is often reflected in spending, which in turn stimulates cash flow into the economy and investment in private and commercial property.