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Irish consumer confidence hits new high
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Irish consumer confidence hits new high

Higher than the UK for first time in nearly nine years

Consumer confidence in Ireland has hit its highest level since the recession and is now the fourth most confident country in Europe, according to the latest Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions.

The Republic of Ireland’s Consumer Confidence Index score – which measures attitudes each quarter on topics including personal finances and job prospects – hit 102 in the second quarter of 2017, up 2 points from Q4 2016, and its highest level since Q4 2007 when it stood at 108. A score over 100 indicates degrees of optimism, below 100, degrees of pessimism.

In Europe, only Denmark, Turkey and Germany are more confident than Ireland.

The latest quarterly study shows the proportion of Irish consumers:

  • Feeling positive about their personal finances hit its highest level since the recession (58%)
  • Feeling positive about their job prospects stayed at its highest level since the recession (58%) – the fifth highest in Europe
  • Feeling now is a good time to make purchases stood at 44%, its second highest level since the recession
  • Who’ve changed spending habits to save money stood at 67%
  • Who’ve switched to cheaper grocery brands to save money – an activity often regarded as a barometer of consumer sentiment and behaviour – hit its second lowest level since the recession (35%)

“Increasing consumer confidence has been a continuing trend in Ireland over the last few years due to a steady improvement in the Irish economic situation,” said Matt Clark, Nielsen’s commercial director in Ireland. “This increase in confidence has translated to consumers spending more on groceries, driving both volume and value growth in the sector, which is good news for Irish manufacturers and retailers.”

How Ireland confidence compares globally

The global Consumer Confidence Index stands three points above Ireland at 104, whilst Europe’s is 85. Irish confidence overtook the UK’s (which now stands at 99) for the first time in nearly nine years.

The Philippines (130) has the highest score globally, Greece the lowest (52).

The scores are derived from Nielsen’s study, established in 2005, which measures among 30,000+ internet consumers in 63 countries. 

To view trends for all countries, view the Q2 2017 Consumer Confidence Report.

ABOUT THE NIELSEN CONSUMER CONFIDENCE INDEX

The Nielsen Consumer Confidence Index measures perceptions of local job prospects, personal finances and immediate-spending intentions. Consumer confidence levels above and below a baseline of 100 indicate degrees of optimism and pessimism, respectively. Within a country, period-to-period movements of seven points or more are considered statistically significant. At a global level, movements of two points are statistically significant; at a regional level, three to four-point movements are statistically significant. The index and other findings related to consumer confidence are based on data from the Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions. Established in 2005, this survey measures consumer confidence, major concerns and spending intentions among more than 30,000 respondents with internet access in 63 countries.