Which?: The big squeeze has become the 'long squeeze'

Our research paints a gloomy picture of worried and pessimistic consumers, with a majority expecting their household budget to get even tighter than last year.

People have as little money to spend now as they had at the start of the recession four years ago, with many simply unable to prepare for unexpected costs or for their retirement.

There's no doubt that the big squeeze has turned into a long squeeze. The assault on real incomes is unlikely to change for the better soon, with consequences not only for individual consumers but also for economic recovery.

– Richard Lloyd, Which? Executive Director

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Consumers 'unable to save'

Almost six million households dipped into their savings, to cover monthly household spending in the last month, a report has found.