September 13, 2011
Mumbai, September 13 2011 – Consumer confidence in India has risen to the highest level since H2 2008 according to the latest MasterCard Worldwide IndexTM of Consumer Confidence. However, consumers across Asia/Pacific displayed concern at the slow pace of the global economic recovery with a dip in optimism recorded over the last six months.
As the global economy continues its slow recovery, 11 out of the 14 Asia/Pacific markets polled for the Index recorded positive consumer sentiment with stable optimism recorded in emerging and established markets including China (78.3), Singapore (77.9), Vietnam (77.1), India (75.2), Hong Kong (69.9), Taiwan (67.6), Malaysia (64.9) and Australia (63.1).
However, 10 out of the 14 Asia/Pacific markets experienced an overall decline in consumer confidence when compared to the previous six months, with three markets - Thailand (46.1), New Zealand (42.2) and Japan (15.9) - showing widespread pessimism across the five key indicators. Overall Asia/ Pacific recorded a drop in consumer confidence from 68.0 to 61.5.
Consumers in India are slightly more optimistic than they were six months ago (73.0) and a year ago (68.2). Indian consumers are optimistic across most of the key indicators with Quality of Life up from 71.3 six months ago to 77.4, Regular Income up from 75.4 to 82.0, the Economy up from 72.2 to 73.3 and Employment up from 70.8 to 72.7. However, they displayed less optimism about the Stock Market indicator than six months ago (75.1 vs. 70.8).
Amongst the Indian cities, Chennai and Bangalore continue to display highest levels of consumer optimism with scores of 87.4 and 82.9 respectively. However, there is a minor dip in the levels of optimism as compared to previous round (90.7 and 85.6 respectively). Consumers in Mumbai have maintained healthy optimism with an improvement in index scores (82.8 vs. 76.6). Consumers in Delhi are less pessimistic about the upcoming six months with a score of 46.1 vs 38.0 six months ago.
Now in its 19th year, the MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence is the region’s most comprehensive and longest running consumer confidence survey. The Index is based on a survey which measures consumer confidence on prevailing expectations in the market for the next six months based on five economic indicators: Economy, Employment, Stock Market, Regular Income and Quality of Life. The Index score is calculated with zero as the most pessimistic, 100 as most optimistic and 50 as neutral.
The latest survey was conducted from 15 March to 27 April 2011 and involved 10,374 consumers from 14 markets. Data collection was via internet surveys, personal, telephone and Computer Aided Telephone interviews, with the questionnaire translated to the local language wherever appropriate and necessary. The Index and its accompanying reports do not represent MasterCard financial performance.
“Consumers across India are confident on most of the critical parameters of the MasterCard Index. However, they are becoming more cautious about the stock market, which is consistent with global trends,” says T.V. Seshadri, general manager and country president, India, MasterCard Worldwide.
“The optimism seen in key indicators such as the Economy, Employment and Quality of Life shows that consumers are still generally confident in the Indian growth story,” he added.
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The MasterCard Worldwide Index™ of Consumer Confidence survey has an 19-year track record of consumer confidence indices collected from over 200,000 interviews, unequalled both in scope and history across Asia/Pacific.
The MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence is the most comprehensive and longest running survey of its kind in the region. In June 1997, the Index revealed a decline in consumer confidence – one month prior to the devaluation of the Thai baht that triggered the regional economic crisis. In June 2003, the Index score for Employment in Hong Kong dropped to a low of 20.0. This was subsequently reflected in Hong Kong’s unemployment rate, which peaked just before September 2003 at eight percent.
The survey comprising the Asia/Pacific markets began in the first half of 1993 and is now conducted annually. Markets from the Middle East and Africa were included in the Index from 2004. Twenty five markets now participate in the survey: Australia, China, Egypt, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Malaysia, Morocco, New Zealand, Nigeria, Oman, Philippines, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, South Africa, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, United Arab Emirates and Vietnam. The last MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence survey was conducted from 15 March to 27 April 2011. A total of 17,620 qualified respondents were surveyed in the 25 markets with the sample being representative of the middle and upper income groups in each market. In each market except China and India, 400 or more people were surveyed. A minimum sample size of 800 was collected from China and India.
The Index is calculated based with zero as the most pessimistic, 100 as most optimistic and 50 as neutral. Five economic factors are measured: Employment, the Economy, Regular Income, Stock Market and Quality of Life. The responses are consumers' thoughts on the six months ahead. Data collection was via internet surveys, personal, telephone and Computer Aided Telephone interviews, with the questionnaire translated to the local language wherever appropriate and necessary. The survey has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus four percentage points at the 90 percent confidence level, except China and India where because of the larger sample, the margin of sampling error is plus or minus three percentage points.
The MasterCard Worldwide Index suite in Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa includes the long-running MasterCard Worldwide Index of Consumer Confidence, as well as the MasterCard Worldwide Index of Women’s Advancement, Online Shopping, Index of Financial Literacy, and the Index of Global Destination Cities. In addition to the Indices, MasterCard’s research properties also include a range of consumer surveys including Ethical Spending and a series on Consumer Purchasing Priorities (covering Travel, Dining & Entertainment, Education, Money Management, Luxury and General Shopping).
MasterCard also regularly releases Insights reports providing analysis of business dynamics, financial policies and regulatory activities in the Asia/Pacific, Middle East and Africa region. Over 80 Insights reports have been produced since 2004.
MasterCard has also released a series of four books on Asian consumer insights, authored by Dr. Yuwa Hedrick-Wong, Global Economic Advisor for MasterCard Worldwide and published by John Wiley & Sons.
MasterCard (NYSE: MA), www.mastercard.com, is a technology company in the global payments industry. We operate the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, traveling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow us on Twitter @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Cashless Conversations Blog and subscribe for the latest news.
Tagsconsumer pulse, employment Prospects, India, stock market, regular income prospects, quality of life, Consumer Confidence, consumer confidence, economy
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About the MasterCard Worldwide Index™ of Consumer Confidence
MasterCard and its Suite of Research Properties