Japan: Consumer confidence jumps to three-and-a-half year high in March
April 6, 2017
Japanese consumer sentiment rose from 43.2 in February to 43.9 in March, hitting the highest level since September 2013. The increase overshot the 43.4 mark that market analysts had predicted. The consumer confidence index measures consumers’ expectations for the next six months on a scale of 0–100, where 100 indicates that all respondents see their living standards improving.
March’s reading reflected a broad-based improvement as all the sub-categories of the index gained ground from February’s print, with the overall livelihood category recording the largest increase. Moreover, income growth hit the highest reading since August 2007, suggesting that the government’s plan to boost salaries in order to prop up private consumption could materialize soon. Employment and consumers’ willingness to buy durable goods also recorded sizeable gains.