September 16, 2013

Consumer confidence slips in Q3

In the latest round of its Consumer Expectations Survey, the BSP said the confidence index dropped to -7.9 percent in the third quarter from -5.7 percent in the second quarter. The BSP blamed the weak confidence level on low harvest, the absence of permanent work and the downturn in some businesses. Despite the decline in the index, it was still the second highest reading since the BSP started the survey in 2007.

The bearish consumer outlook in the country mirrored weaker sentiment in Japan, Indonesia, Taiwan and Thailand. It was, however, the reverse of a more upbeat consumer confidence in Australia, Germany and China.

The number of households with savings increased in the third quarter, as consumers in the previous quarter were weighed down by education expenses. Respondents expect spending on basic goods and services to remain steady, while expenditure on big-ticket items such as motor vehicles and housing was upbeat.

“The favorable outlook on buying big-ticket items was due to perception that properties are good investments, consumer durables provide family convenience and motor vehicles can be utilized for business and personal use,” Department of Economic Statistics director Rosabel B. Guerro said. - WealthSec