July 20, 2010 - Global consumer confidence cautiously edged up one index point to 93 in the second quarter as confidence increases in booming Asian markets were offset by European consumers’ growing concerns of an escalating debt crisis, which battered confidence levels in Spain, Italy and France, according to the latest edition of the Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Index. Consumer confidence rose two points in the U.S. in Q2 to 87, where the world’s largest economy continued on course for a slow, but steady climb out of the recession. Consumer Confidence Index levels above and below a baseline of 100 indicate degrees of optimism and pessimism.
“While the global economy is in better shape than it was nine months ago, (+7 index points compared to Q3 2009), the ongoing European debt crisis is a major setback to the global economic recovery anticipated this year,” said Dr. Venkatesh Bala, Chief Economist at The Cambridge Group, a part of The Nielsen Company. “U.S. consumers closely watched unemployment numbers, while Europeans witnessed the government implement new and in some cases, severe fiscal austerity measures amid stagnant job markets and a weakening Euro. Consumers in Western developed economies realized that the road to full economic recovery is going to take a bit longer than expected. In the ongoing weak-to-moderate growth environment, there is some risk for businesses of deflationary pressure, requiring close attention to improving pricing power through more effective deployment of media, innovation and channel marketing efforts.”
Nielsen’s Global Consumer Confidence Index tracks consumer confidence, major concerns and spending intentions among approximately 27,000 Internet users in 48 countries. In the latest round of the survey conducted between May 10 and May 26, 2010, consumer confidence fell in nine out of 24 European markets. The only non-European markets to post quarter-on-quarter declines were Australia, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Taiwan, Brazil and Egypt.
Regionally, consumer confidence steadily climbed three index points in Latin America, two index points in Asia Pacific and North America and one index point in Europe. Latin America topped regional consumer confidence levels at 102 index points, followed by Asia Pacific (101 index points), and Middle East, Africa, Pakistan (MEAP) with 89 index points. In North America, consumer confidence reached 88 index points, while Europe lagged behind as the least confident region at 79 index points.
About the Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Survey
The Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted between May 10 and May 26, 2010 and polled approximately 27, 000 consumers in 48 countries throughout Asia Pacific, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and North America about their confidence levels and economic outlook. The Nielsen Consumer Confidence Index is developed based on consumers’ confidence in the job market, status of their personal finances and readiness to spend. The sample has quotas based on age and sex for each country based on their Internet users, and is weighted to be representative of Internet consumers and has a maximum margin of error of ±0.6%.
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