Consumers untroubled by election uncertainty

Uncertainty over the Federal Election result didn’t hit consumer confidence, according to new Roy Morgan figures.


The Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Rating, which was conducted on the weekend of September 4-5, stands at 123.0, down 0.3 points since the election. The confidence rating is 0.5 points lower than the same week last year.


With the election result up in the air for 17 days until the independents decided to back the Labor government, analysts raised concerns that small businesses would be hit be consumer conservatism.


However, these fears appear to be unfounded, with the Australian public seemingly unperturbed by the lack of a clear winning party.


The report shows that 28% of Australians think that their personal finances are in better shape than a year ago, a drop of 5% on the same period last year. A total of 28% of those polled say that their family is worse off financially than a year ago.


Four in 10 Australians still expect their families to be better off financially this time this year, with just 13%, down 1%, anticipating that they will be worse off.


Gary Morgan says: “This week’s decision by the RBA to leave interest rates unchanged at 4.5% should provide support to next week’s Consumer Confidence and encourage consumers to continue shopping — this week a slim majority, 53% (up 1%) of Australians, said now was a ‘good time to buy’ major household items.”


The Roy Morgan research also shows there was strengthening approval for both Woolworths and IGA among the major supermarkets in July. IGA is up by 3.6% in the last four months and Woolworths is up 2.5% in three months, although both supermarkets are still behind satisfaction market leader Aldi.


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