Consumer survey shows Indians are most optimistic on job prospects

22 July 2014

India has overtaken Indonesia to become the most optimistic consumer market in a world where more than half the consumers ranked their job prospects between good to excellent in the year ahead, a survey revealed.

Global consumer confidence in the second quarter of 2014 is also the highest since the first quarter of 2007, the survey conducted by global information and insights company Nielsen showed.

However, Portugal and Slovenia remained the most pessimistic, while consumer confidence in Japan and Hong Kong saw the biggest declines from the previous quarter, according to the survey.

The Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Index rose 1 point in the second quarter to 97, according to the survey, conducted between 12 and 30 May. The reading headed closer to the 100 mark that signals optimism among consumers.

US consumers were the eighth most upbeat globally as optimism about job prospects surged.

"Payroll growth is visible across a range of (US) sectors, which is also positive," said Venkatesh Bala, chief economist at the Cambridge Group, a part of Nielsen.

"However, real-wage growth of workers has been anaemic so far, and needs to pick up substantially, along with other improvements in the labour market, in order for consumer spending to increase in a broad-based way."

Region-wise, consumers in the Asia Pacific were most confident about job prospects with 65 per cent seeing favourable job opportunities in the year ahead, up from 64 per cent in the first quarter.

Globally, 56 per cent of respondents to the survey viewed their personal finances positively, up from 55 per cent over the past three consecutive quarters.

North America reported the biggest increase, with 63 per cent of respondents feeling secure in money matters over the next 12 months, up from 59 per cent in the first quarter.

While consumer confidence in debt-laden euro zone economies remained weak it improved sharply in Italy, which Nielsen attributed to confidence in Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's new government, formed in February.

Confidence also continued to improve in Greece, France and Spain, although in slow pace.

Outside the euro zone, consumer sentiment in Britain rose to its highest level since 2007 as the country's economy continued to outperform euro zone peers.

Ukraine, meanwhile, saw a rebound in consumer sentiment after a sharp fall in the first quarter following a political crisis and tensions with Russia after Moscow annexed the Crimea region.

The Nielsen survey covered more than 30,000 online consumers across 60 markets.


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