New Zealand: Consumer confidence remains at over two-year low in September
September 28, 2018
The ANZ-Roy Morgan consumer confidence indicator remained steady at August’s 117.6 in September, the lowest reading since May 2016. Nevertheless, the index remained comfortably above the 100-point threshold that separates optimism from pessimism among consumers.
September’s print reflected the rise in the future conditions index being offset by the decline in the current conditions index over the previous month. Consumers’ appraisal of their current financial situation remained unchanged in September, however, their willingness to purchase major household items weakened notably to a three-year low compared to August. Meanwhile, the improvement in the future conditions index came on the back of households’ more upbeat views over their one and five-year economic outlooks. Moreover, consumers turned slightly more optimistic about the prospect of being financially better off in one year.
All told, the headline indicator remained around its historical average in September and suggested that consumer confidence remains average: Although households’ assessments over their personal finances continue to be strong, they show a little wariness over the state of the broader economy in the future.
Author: Javier Colato, Economist