Consumer confidence continues to improve in Norway, Sweden and Finland, but Denmark has dropped eight index points in Q1 2010 compared to six months ago. While concern about the economy and job security still remains, Nordic consumers are more optimistic than the rest of Europe regarding the state of their personal finances and their willingness to spend.
The Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence Survey was conducted between 8 March - March 26, 2010 among more than 27,000 consumers in 55 markets from Europe, Asia Pacific, North America, Latin America and the Middle East.
While the economy is still the major concern in Denmark, Finland and Sweden, Norwegians are more concerned about other issues such as work/life balance and childrens education and/or welfare.
On a European average, the major concerns are the economy (23%) followed by job security (21%) and health (20%).
When it comes to utilizing spare cash, financial security is still a priority. Norwegians and Swedes are the top two countries in Europe, preferring to put their spare cash into savings.
When it comes to spending, holidays/vacations is still the top category together with home improvements.
Changing Spending Habits
To save on household expenses, the following said that they have changed their spending habits: Finland: 40% (- 3% compared to October 2009 Survey) Sweden: 41% (+3%), Norway: 36% (- 1%), Denmark: 36% (flat).
Consumers in the Nordics have not changed their spending habits to the same extent as the rest of Europe. On a European average, 63% said that they have changed their spending habits compared to one year ago.
Read the full Nordic report on consumer confidence, concerns and spending intentions.