Consumer confidence declined 3.2% last week, driven lower by weakness in ‘economic conditions’. The Index is now at a five-and-a-half year low.
- ‘Current economic conditions’ saw a significant decline of 16.6%. In percentage terms, the downturn was the largest since January 2009. ‘Future economic conditions’ declined by 2.9%. Both the subcomponents are well below long-term averages.
- In contrast to the weakness in economic conditions, confidence in financial conditions rose. ‘Current financial conditions’ gained 3.8%, while ‘future finances’ gained 0.9%.
- ‘Time to buy a major household item’ fell by 3.8%. The four-week moving average for ‘inflation expectations’ was stable at 4%.
ANZ Head of Australian Economics, David Plank, commented:
“The coronavirus impacted consumer confidence in a big way last week, with overall sentiment falling to its lowest level in more than five years. The virus induced sell-off in the local and global stock markets and the big drop in the Chinese PMI likely contributed to the weakness. The fall seen in ‘current economic conditions’ shows that Australians are getting skittish about the well-being of the economy, though they are still quite content about their personal financial circumstances. This divergence remains the most notable aspect of the confidence survey. So far the negative economic outlook has been a better guide to household spending than more positive financial sentiment.“
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Margin of Error
The margin of error to be allowed for in any estimate depends mainly on the number of interviews on which it is based. Margin of error gives indications of the likely range within which estimates would be 95% likely to fall, expressed as the number of percentage points above or below the actual estimate. Allowance for design effects (such as stratification and weighting) should be made as appropriate.
|Sample Size||Percentage Estimate|
|40% – 60%||25% or 75%||10% or 90%||5% or 95%|