Consumer confidence is making a comeback, with the ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Index now 7 points off its October low. The overall index rose 3 points in December and sits a little above the historical average. The Current Conditions Index lifted 3 points to 124 while the Future Conditions Index rose 4 points to 121.
- Consumers’ perceptions of their current financial situation lifted 1 point to a net 11% feeling financially better off than a year ago.
- A net 30% of consumers expect to be better off financially this time next year, up 4 points.
- A net 36% think it’s a good time to buy a major household item, up 4 points.
- Perceptions regarding the next year’s economic outlook lifted 7 points to a net 14% expecting conditions to improve, the highest since March. The five-year outlook was unchanged at +18%.
- The improvement was driven out of Wellington, up 10 points, and Canterbury, up 9 points. Wellington has reclaimed top spot at 129.
- House price inflation expectations were unchanged around the country (2.9%), though they fell 1.1%pts in Auckland. They are weakest in Auckland (1.8%) and strongest in Other South Island (4.5%).
- Inflation expectations lifted 0.8%pts to 4.2%. This series is volatile, but it’s notable that this is the highest read since 2012. However, falling petrol prices mean the lift is unlikely to be sustained.
Consumers are feeling pretty good as Christmas approaches, with confidence lifting again to sit a bit above historically average levels. The proportion thinking it is a good time to buy a major household item bodes well for spending in the lead-in to Christmas (figure 2).
Our confidence composite gauge (which combines business expectations and intentions with overall consumer sentiment to capture both the demand and supply side of the economy) continues to suggest momentum in the economy is set to slow (figure 3). However, business sentiment indicators appear to be reflecting factors other than turnover/activity at the moment. We see growth holding up in a 2½-3% range for the foreseeable future, with consumption on a fairly steady path, supported by a strong labour market but capped by high household debt.
Click here to download the latest ANZ-Roy Morgan New Zealand Consumer Confidence Release PDF - December 2018.
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The latest Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Monthly Report is available on the Roy Morgan Online Store. It provides demographic breakdowns for Age, Sex, State, Region (Capital Cities/ Country), Generations, Lifecycle, Socio-Economic Scale, Work Status, Occupation, Home Ownership, Voting Intention, Roy Morgan Value Segments and more.
You can also view our monitor of Quarterly New Zealand Unemployment & Under-employment Estimates.
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