In a recent ANZ-Roy Morgan survey, consumer confidence took a hit, declining by 3.4 percentage points to 75 last week. This drop occurred even as the Reserve Bank of Australia decided to keep the cash rate on hold. The persistently weak confidence levels, remaining below 80 points, have now endured for an unprecedented 23 consecutive weeks, marking the longest streak on record.
Adelaide Timbrell, senior economist at ANZ, shed light on the factors contributing to the downward trend. “Homeowners with debt still have far lower confidence than other cohorts, as restrictive interest rates squeeze cash flows of indebted households,” Timbrell pointed out.
The regional breakdown in confidence levels revealed Western Australia ending the week with the highest average confidence, offering a glimmer of optimism. However, Queensland reported the lowest average confidence among its residents, signaling concerns and uncertainties prevalent in the state.
Notably, the decline in confidence was observed across all housing cohorts, indicating a widespread impact. However, the most significant drop was witnessed among renters, following a surge in confidence reported in the previous week.
The ANZ-Roy Morgan survey provides valuable insights into consumer sentiment and helps gauge the overall economic outlook. As Australia navigates through challenging times, concerns surrounding indebted households and the cash rate’s stability remain central to understanding the fluctuations in consumer confidence.