Why Consumer Confidence Slipped 4.6 pts in April

Power Retail By Power Retail | 12 Apr 2021

Consumer confidence has slipped 4.6 pts, Roy Morgan has reported. This is the lowest since November 2020. 

What has driven the slip? According to Roy Morgan, the lockdown of Greater Brisbane was the catalyst, driving lower consumer confidence over the Easter Weekend.

As such, it is now below the 2021 weekly average of 110.4, but it’s not all bad news. In fact, Consumer Confidence is a whopping 35.8 pts higher than the same week a year ago, where it slumped to 71.9 pts.

“New COVID-19 cases, the snap Brisbane lockdown and the end of JobKeeper combined to drag consumer confidence down 4.6pts,” shared Catherine Birch, the ANZ Senior Economist. “This was the largest fall since late-March 2020.”

According to the report, 19 percent of Australians are expecting ‘good times’ for the Australian economy in the next 12 months. In contrast, 20 percent are expecting ‘bad times’.

Furthermore, 39 percent (down 5ppts) of Australian households say that now is a good time to buy a major household item. This is the lowest figure for this indicator since November 2020.

Similarly, 28 percent (up 4ppts) say that now is a bad time to buy a major household item, which is the highest figure for nearly five months.

“Not even the Easter long weekend could cheer us up; in fact, in four of the five years pre-COVID, confidence declined over Easter,” shared Birch.

“Queensland recorded the sharpest drop of 11.2pts, even though the 3-day Brisbane lockdown ended on Thursday, but all other states bar South Australia also recorded declines.”

It’s not all bad news, though, Birch said. With the end of lockdown in Queensland and the roll-out of vaccines continuing, Australian businesses can expect to see an uplift in consumer confidence in the coming weeks.

“History shows that confidence tends to bounce back quickly once lockdowns lift though, so we should see confidence improve over coming weeks. It’s possible, however, that the end of JobKeeper on 28 March will have a more prolonged effect on confidence,” Birch shared.

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