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(Australian Associated Press)
Consumer confidence crumbled during the weekend as public perceptions about the outlook for the Australian economy hit a two-and-a-half year low.
The ANZ-Roy Morgan Australian Consumer Confidence index fell 1.1 per cent from the previous week, with respondents’ views of the economy over the next year slumping 4.0 per cent.
It was the ANZ survey’s fourth consecutive decline in the 12-month economic outlook, leaving the sub-index at levels last recorded in April 2017.
Sentiment about the state of the economy during the next five years also fell in the most recent results released on Tuesday, slipping 3.8 per cent.
But the weekly measure of consumer mood, which is based on about 1,000 face-to-face interviews conducted on Saturdays and Sundays, also registered a 5.0 per cent improvement when people were asked how their current financial condition compares with their circumstances a year ago.
Optimism about the respondents’ finances and that of their families during the next 12 months edged up 0.4 per cent.
The survey’s “time to buy a major household item” metric was down 3.3 per cent from the previous week.
“Consumer confidence lost ground last week as concerns about the economic outlook trumped a more positive assessment of personal finances,” ANZ economist David Plank said.
“Uncertainty around global trade is likely a factor.”