Global consumer confidence ended 2015 on a subdued note as the index declined two points from the third quarter to 97—the same score as the start of the year. Compared to first-quarter 2015, confidence in the fourth quarter remained flat in Asia-Pacific at 107, while Europe edged up four points to 81. All other regions ended the year less confident than they started, with the North America and Middle East/Africa regions declining six points each to 100 and 90, respectively, and Latin America declining three points to 83.
Europe was the only region to show consistent confidence improvements throughout the year across all three indicators (job prospects, personal finances and intentions to buy), albeit at low levels. In Asia-Pacific, confidence-indicator levels remained relatively consistent throughout the year, with fourth-quarter job prospects at 61%, personal finance sentiment at 62% and immediate spending intentions at 47%. In North America, levels were more mixed, but generally positive, as the year ended with job prospects at 45%, personal finance beliefs at 60% and spending intentions at 52%. Conversely, confidence indicator levels were down throughout the year in Latin America and Middle East/Africa.
Among the world’s largest economies, China’s score was 107, a rise of one point from the third quarter, followed by the U.K. (101), the U.S. (100), Germany (98) and Japan (79), which all showed quarter-on-quarter confidence declines.
In the latest online survey, conducted Nov. 2-25, 2015, consumer confidence increased in 26 of 61 markets measured by Nielsen (43% of measured markets). India’s score of 131 was the highest level, with no change from the third quarter, and South Korea’s was the lowest at 46, a quarterly rise of four points.