Japan: Consumer confidence rebounds from two-year low
June 9, 2011
Consumer confidence rebounded in May, after the Tohoku earthquake prompted the largest drop since the Asian financial crisis. In May, consumer confidence added 1.1 points over the previous month climbing to 34.2 points from 33.1 points recorded in April, which represented the lowest result since April 2009. Nevertheless, the reading came in below market expectations of 34.5 points. A reading below 50 points indicates that pessimists outnumber optimists. The increase in household confidence was broad-based, as all main categories recorded gains. In particular, the willingness to buy durable goods component jumped 2.6 points to 35.5 points, while overall livelihood rose 1.6 points to 36.4 points. On the other hand, employment and income growth added just 0.2 points over previous month's outcome. The recovery seen in the May consumer confidence result was supported by massive efforts by both the government and the private sector to restore facilities and supply chains.