Thursday, June 20, 2024

Pessimistic Australians and confident Kiwis

Nielsen’s latest consumer confidence results for the second quarter of 2017 shows a very different attitude between Australians and New Zealanders.

According to the report, New Zealand is “riding its wave of positivity with a consumer confidence score of 103” which is up seven points from the same time last year. The report paints a very different picture for Australia, which recorded “a consumer confidence score of 89 – slightly down from where it had been consistently sitting at 91 for most of 2016”.

Nielsen’s data shows: “rising optimism among Kiwi consumers has been driven by notable increases in all key confidence influencers. Sixty per cent of New Zealanders believe that local job prospects are good/excellent over the next 12 months – up 14 percentage points on Q2 2016. More than three in five (61 per cent) consumers say the state of their personal finances are good/excellent (up six percentage points on Q2 2017), hile 47 per cent believe it is now a good/excellent time to buy what they need and want (up from 39 per cent in Q2 2016).

“The FMCG sector in New Zealand has also enjoyed buoyant growth. Topline dollar value increased by 3.7 per cent in the second quarter of 2017 compared with a year ago, largely driven by price inflation in chilled dairy categories and new product development fuelling confectionery growth.”

Unfortunately for Australia, the data also showed that “underpinning Australians’ pessimistic outlook is their perception of local job prospects. Less than one third of consumers (32 per cent) say that labour conditions are good/excellent over the next 12 months – almost half the proportion of Kiwi consumers (60 per cent) and well below the global benchmark of 53 per cent. Just over half (51 per cent) of Australian consumers say that the state of their personal finances are good/excellent – up two points versus Q2 2016; while just 42 per cent say it is a good/excellent time to buy the things they want and need.

“In the Australian grocery sector, environmental factors such as record underemployment, low wage inflation, rising utilities prices, as well as the increased strength of private label and discounters, has affected channel growth.”

Nielsen’s research indicated that Australian food manufacturers needed a change of mindset to embrace fully the potential sales capacity by properly engaging with Asian-born consumers. The data shows that these consumers devote a third (32 per cent) of their grocery spend on fresh food, compared with Australian-born consumers at 26 per cent. Asian-born consumers are also thought to have a “strong skew towards seafood, herbs and healthier food options in general”.

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