There was no change in sentiment for Ireland in Q1 2013 as confidence levels held steady at 65 (+0 on last quarter and +1 on Q1 2012). From a high of 118 pre-recession, the index level has remained between 60 and 68 since mid 2009 (the lowest dip seen during Q4 2011 at 60).
These latest Nielsen online survey results reveal continuing uncertainty about the future state of the Irish economy. 95% of respondents still believe Ireland is in recession, which is one of the most pessimistic outlooks globally. Out of 58 countries measured, Ireland ranks 4th lowest, behind Hungary, Italy and Portugal. Furthermore, concern remains about the immediate economic future, with 78% believing that we will still be in economic recession in 12 months time (though slightly less pessimistic than the previous quarter at 81%). The biggest concerns are the economy (-2), job security (-1) and debt (+0). Those with ‘no spare cash’ increased (+1) to 28% as did saving (+3) to 33%. However there appears to be a slight easing on cost cutting in Q1 2013 with a drop of (-6) to 66% for those switching to cheaper grocery brands.