30 Aug 2019

Consumers slightly more optimistic about finances

1:52 pm on 30 August 2019

Consumer confidence has perked up a shade, belying headlines of a slowing economy and a deteriorating global outlook.

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Consumers were more optimistic about their own finances than on the broader short term economic outlook. Photo: 123RF

The ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence index has risen two points from last month to 118, just below its historical average.

Consumers were slightly more optimistic about their current and longer term own financial position, and the number thinking it's a good time to buy a big ticket item remained buoyant .

"Consumers continue to be more sure about the here and now," said ANZ economist Michael Callaghan.

"Households are feeling relatively robust at the moment. Low interest rates are set to provide another support."

However, sentiment about the broader short term economic outlook remained marginally negative.

The consumer survey is at odds with a similar one done with businesses, which showed confidence slumping to its lowest level in more than a decade.

Mr Workman said, notwithstanding more upbeat consumer sentiment, there were risks.

"A key downside risk over the year ahead is that employment indicators have deteriorated ... While the labour market is undeniably tight at the moment, that appears set to change."

He expected the Reserve Bank to deliver another rate cut in November, and possibly another early next year depending on the global outlook.

Putting the business and consumer confidence surveys together implied annual economic growth of 2 to 2.5 percent