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Consumer confidence falls for second week straight

Declines in sentiment toward both financial and economic conditions drove a fall in consumer confidence in the week ending 12 February.

According to the latest ANZ-Roy Morgan Australian Consumer Confidence analysis, consumer confidence edged down by 0.9 per cent to 116.4 in the week ending 12 February, its second straight fall.

According to ANZ, the decrease was driven primarily by a deterioration in sentiment toward both financial and economic conditions over the next 12 months.

Households’ views of economic conditions over the next 12 months deteriorated by 3.8 per cent, and sentiment regarding economic conditions over the next five years also edged down 0.7 per cent during the same period.

Meanwhile, households’ views of current finances improved by 1.0 per cent. Sentiment towards future finances fell by 1.8 per cent, however both indicators remain “well above” their long run averages according to ANZ.

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Commenting on the results, ANZ head of Australian economics David Plank remarked that the slight fall in consumer confidence was “somewhat disappointing”, given the recent positive data around business conditions and house prices, as well as some recovery in domestic stock prices.

“The deterioration in the financial and economic outlooks over the next 12 months may reflect the current global policy uncertainty as well as downward revisions to growth in last week’s Statement on Monetary Policy,” he offered.

“Overall, however, confidence remains above trend and is likely to remain elevated in the longer term in our view, supported by solid economic fundamentals and accommodative monetary conditions. Importantly, confidence in current finances appears to have stabilised.”

Mr Plank added that ANZ expects a “solid rise” in employment given the strength in business conditions and leading employment indicators.

[Related: Consumers’ views on finances drop]

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