Consumer confidence reached all-time high in Q2
Consumer confidence hit an all-time high of 13.1 percent in the second quarter partly on many Filipinos’ perception of a better peace and order situation in the country, results of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas’ (BSP) latest consumer expectations survey showed.
Based on survey conducted on April 1-12, or before martial law was declared in Mindanao last May 23 due to the attacks in Marawi City, the overall confidence index (CI) jumped from 8.7 percent in the first quarter as well as reversed the negative 6.4 percent posted during the April to June period last year.
BSP data showed that each of the first four quarters of the Duterte administration posted a positive CI, which meant that the number of optimistic households exceeded those who were pessimistic. The CIs prior to the third quarter of 2016, or since the consumer expectations survey was started in 2007, were all negative.
Rosabel B. Guerrero, director at the BSP’s department of economic statistics, attributed the sustained net positive consumer sentiment to the following: additional family income due to higher salary and stronger business activity; availability of more jobs and increase in the number of employed family members; effective government policies; as well as improvements in the peace and order situation.
“Their more positive outlook was also boosted by the assistance from government such as the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) and increase in pension of retirees, expected higher overseas Filipino remittances, and anticipated good harvest,” Guerrero added.
Asked if the declaration of martial law will impact on consumer optimism moving forward, Guerrero replied: “It could, but not that much because the conflict is quite contained.”
“Although that could affect the perception of respondents in Marawi and in the nearby areas, the impact would not be that significant to affect the positive outlook of consumers,” Guerrero said.
However, consumer sentiment for the third quarter was less optimistic as the CI decreased to 13.6 percent from 16.5 percent during the previous’ quarter’s survey.
“Respondents’ less favorable outlook for the next quarter stemmed from concerns about increase in prices of goods, expectations of higher expenses for their children’s education such as tuition fees, and lower income or no increase in income,” according to Guerrero.
Consumers were nonetheless more upbeat about next year, as the CI climbed to 34.3 percent from 31.7 percent in the previous quarter.
Guerrero said the improved outlook for the year ahead was due to anticipation of “additional family income due to higher salary and stronger business activity, availability of more jobs and additional working family members, improvements in the peace and order situation, and influx of more investors in the country.”
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