UK Shoppers
The UK was just one of 11 countries to record double digit growth in consumer confidence levelsReuters

Consumer confidence in the UK grew at five times the pace of the global average in 2014, new data has revealed.

Figures from Nielsen show that, following four successive quarters in which consumer confidence rose, the UK's Consumer Confidence Index hit 94 by the end of 2014– up by 10 points on the end of 2013 and the highest it has been since 2006. The UK was just one of 11 countries to record double digit growth.

Consumer confidence around the globe rose by 2 points to reach 96 in 2014, and in Europe it reached 76, up by three points.

Nonetheless, the high score in the UK is not cause for celebration yet as any score below 100 is still a sign of pessimism.

Nielsen's UK head of retailer and business insights Mike Watkins said: "Although consumer confidence is back to pre-2008 financial crisis levels, with economic indicators improving and people feeling more confident about job prospects, the British shopper is still reluctant or unable to spend.

"Most households continue to change their spending to save on household expenses. A quarter of shoppers also claim not to have any spare cash, a constant percentage since the end of the recession. Among those who do have spare cash, almost half would put it into savings, whilst nearly a third will pay off debts.

"However, the most significant change to spending intentions was the increase in households switching to cheaper grocery brands to save money – from 37% to 45%."