1. ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence increased to its highest level since early February 2023, reaching a score of 84.8 in the first week of 2024.
2. Consumer Confidence is currently 8.4 points higher than it was a month ago in December 2023 and nearly 7 points above the weekly average for 2023.
3. Despite the increase, Consumer Confidence has been below the mark of 85 for a record 47 consecutive weeks and is 2.6 points lower than the same week last year.
4. Consumer Confidence increased in the larger states of NSW, Victoria, and Queensland, but slightly decreased in Western Australia and South Australia.
5. The increase in Consumer Confidence can be attributed to improved buying intentions during the post-Christmas sales period and reduced concerns about the economy’s performance in the next year and next five years.
A Positive Shift in Consumer Sentiment as the New Year Begins
ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence has seen a notable increase, rising to 84.8 in the first week of 2024. This surge takes the index to its highest point since early February 2023, marking a significant uplift in consumer sentiment.
Key Highlights of the Consumer Confidence Report
- Significant Increase in Confidence: The index started 2024 with an 8.4-point increase compared to early December and is now nearly 7 points above the 2023 weekly average of 78.0.
- Record Duration Below Benchmark: Despite the increase, Consumer Confidence has remained below the 85-point mark for a record 47 straight weeks and is 2.6 points lower than the same week a year ago.
- State-Wise Variations: Consumer Confidence saw improvements in larger states like NSW, Victoria, and Queensland, while there was a slight decline in Western Australia and South Australia.
- Improved Buying Intentions: The post-Christmas sales period saw an uptick in buying intentions, with 25% of Australians considering it a ‘good time to buy’ major household items, the highest figure for this indicator in nearly a year.
- Economic Outlook: Expectations for the Australian economy over the next year and the next five years have improved, with a decrease in the number of people expecting ‘bad times’.
Consumer Sentiment on Financial Conditions
- Current Financial Conditions: 19% of Australians feel their families are ‘better off’ financially than last year, while 52% believe they are ‘worse off’.
- Future Financial Conditions: 34% expect to be ‘better off’ financially next year, while 32% anticipate being ‘worse off’.
ANZ Senior Economist, Adelaide Timbrell, commented on the findings, noting the significant January jump in consumer confidence. She highlighted the impact of rising housing prices and more stable rates on the confidence of homeowners and indebted homeowners. Timbrell anticipates a further lift in consumer confidence as inflation shows signs of declining.
The ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence report for early 2024 reflects a positive start to the year, with consumer sentiment showing a significant improvement. The data suggests a growing optimism among Australians about their financial and economic prospects, despite the record duration of confidence remaining below the benchmark level. This trend is crucial for understanding consumer behavior and market dynamics as the year progresses.