Consumer confidence falls to an eight-week low

Consumer confidence declined 1.0 per cent last week, following a 4.6 per cent fall the week before.

There was a little improvement in the financial conditions sub-indices, with ‘current finances’ gaining 0.7 per cent and ‘future finances’ up 1.9 per cent.

But economic conditions weakened further with ‘current economic conditions’ declining 2.2 per cent and ‘future economic conditions’ falling 2.7 per cent.

‘Time to buy a household item’ fell by 3.1 per cent following the 4.9 per cent decrease last week. ‘Inflation expectations’ was stable at 3.2 per cent (four-week moving average).

“Confidence fell a further 1 per cent last week, taking it to an eight-week low. Although there was a marginal improvement in how people felt about their financial conditions, confidence in economic conditions continued to deteriorate,” ANZ Senior Economist Catherine Birch said.

“This was not surprising, with new COVID-19 case numbers continuing to escalate in Melbourne. While the return to lockdown has so far been localised to 12 postcodes, the confidence effect is more pervasive.”

“The uncertainty also appears to be discouraging households from committing to large purchases, with ‘time to buy a major household item’ falling heavily for a second week.”

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