New to the Nielsen consumer confidence measurement in the first quarter is the addition of three sub-Saharan African markets—Nigeria, Kenya and Ghana. The three markets, which deploy a mobile methodology, are new to Nielsen’s existing online survey of more than 30,000 consumers in 60 countries. Each quarter Nielsen measures consumer confidence and spending intentions across the globe and continually updates country participation to reflect the changing connected landscape.
Of the three countries added, Nigeria’s consumer confidence was highest with an index of 120 in the first quarter. Kenya also reported an optimistic, above-the-baseline index score of 110, and Ghana’s index score was just below the baseline at 97. More than half of respondents in Kenya (57%) and Nigeria (52%) were optimistic about local job prospects in the next 12 months, compared with 42 percent in Ghana.
“As seen in other developing markets, consumers in Africa generally have an extremely positive outlook, which is encouraging for consumer businesses looking at growth in Africa,” said Dwight Watson, managing director, Nielsen, sub-Saharan Africa. “With spending on consumer products accounting for on average just over 50 percent of income, consumers are cautious about their current ability to spend. Therefore, product choices that meet consumers’ needs remain the key opportunity.”
While 80 percent of Nigerian respondents were confident about their personal finances, just under half (49%) believed that now was a good time to spend. In Kenya, 69 percent of respondents believed money matters were good or excellent, and 36 percent were confident in their current spending capacity. In Ghana, 62 percent were optimistic about their finances, and 34 percent of respondents were ready to spend.
The majority of respondents in the three countries (71% in Ghana, 66% in Kenya and 59% in Nigeria) did not have spare cash. Among those who did have discretionary money to spend, saving and spending intentions in the three countries showed similar priorities. Saving was a priority for 91 percent in Kenya, 83 percent in Nigeria and 76 percent in Ghana, followed by spending on home improvement projects (74% in Kenya, 73% in Nigeria, 64% Ghana).
Other findings include:
For more detail and insight, download Nielsen’s Q1 2014 Global Consumer Confidence Report.
The Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions was conducted Feb. 17, 2014–March 7, 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 their Internet users, and it’s weighted to be representative of Internet consumers and has a maximum margin of error of ±0.6 percent. This Nielsen survey is based on the behavior of respondents with online access only. Internet penetration rates vary by country. Nielsen uses a minimum reporting standard of 60 percent Internet penetration or 10 million online population 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.