Consumer Confidence in the Middle East/Africa region dipped one-index point in the fourth quarter, ending 2014 with a score of 95. The score marked a five-point increase from the fourth quarter of 2013. Among the five countries measured in the region, three saw quarterly consumer confidence increases. At 114, the United Arab Emirates had the highest index in the region, up two points from the third quarter. Egypt reported the region’s biggest quarterly increase, rising five points to 90, while confidence in South Africa rose two points to 88. Conversely, confidence decreased three points in Saudi Arabia to 102 and two points in Pakistan to 101.
“Egypt’s consumer confidence score has been climbing for the last two quarters, and we see a direct correlation to the country’s economic growth during that same period,” said Tamer El Araby, managing director for Egypt, Levant and North Africa. “As Egypt approaches the confidence baseline score of 100, the next challenge will be to improve how people perceive their personal finances. This could lead to a point when Egyptian consumers no longer focus on immediate living requirements, but rather look forward to potential future growth.”
Regionally, quarter-on-quarter discretionary spending intentions in the fourth quarter increased four percentage points each for new clothes (27%) and out-of-home entertainment (23%), two percentage points each for paying off debts (20%) and home improvements (17%) and one percentage point for retirement (6%). Twenty-two percent of Middle East/Africa respondents said they have no spare cash, which was flat from the previous quarter and the highest percentage of any region.
Other findings from the latest Consumer Confidence report include:
For more detail and insight, download Nielsen’s Q4 2014 Global Consumer Confidence Report.
The Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions was conducted Nov. 10-28, 2014 and polled more than 30,000 online consumers in 60 countries throughout Asia-Pacific, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East/Africa and North America. The sample has quotas based on age and sex for each country based on its Internet users and is weighted to be representative of Internet consumers. It has a margin of error of ±0.6%. This Nielsen survey is based only on the behavior of respondents with online access. Internet penetration rates vary by country. Nielsen uses a minimum reporting standard of 60% Internet penetration or an online population of 10 million for survey inclusion. The China Consumer Confidence Index is compiled from a separate mixed methodology survey among 3,500 respondents in China. The sub-Saharan African countries in this study are compiled from a separate mobile methodology survey among 1,600 respondents in Ghana, Kenya and Nigeria. The Nielsen Global Survey, which includes the Global Consumer Confidence Index, was established in 2005.