South African Consumer Confidence Up Slightly In Q2
South African consumers were marginally more confident in the second quarter of the year, the latest Nielsen Consumer Confidence index for Q2 2019 has found.
Consumer confidence was up three points to 93 in the period, the study found.
"Despite experiencing tight financial conditions due to factors such as rising fuel and utility prices and lower personal income in real terms, South African consumers are feeling slightly more positive, which has translated into the increase in their overall confidence levels," commented Nielsen South Africa Connect managing director Kerith Botha.
Botha added that Nielsen's findings were backed up by recent Stats SA data, which showed that he economy grew "beyond expectations", rising by 3.1% in the second quarter of 2019.
"In addition, food price increases at major supermarkets have remained between 3% and 6%, below current consumer price inflation figures for South Africa," he added.
Some 19% of South African consumers' monthly budget goes on food and beverages, according to Nielsen, with 17% going towards housing and 10% on education.
According to Nielsen, when asked if South African consumers have any spare cash at the end of the month, 80% said 'yes', with close to half (47%) putting their disposable income into savings.
When asked how consumers have responded to the recent income squeeze, 84% responded that they have changed their shopping habits, with 49% switching to cheaper grocery brands, and 61% cutting down on takeaway meals.
The number of South African consumers that view their job prospects as 'excellent' or 'good' has also risen, by one point to 33%, while those that say the state of their personal finances over the next 12 months will be excellent or good has increased by three points to 66%.
"South African consumer sentiment is stable at present off the back of positive movement during the last three quarters," Botha added. "It will be interesting to see how consumer confidence and spending intentions are impacted by macro-economic factors and consumers’ personal outlook in the months to come."
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.