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UAE Consumer Confidence Up, Ranks 5th Most Bullish Globally In Q3 – Nielson

UAE Consumer Confidence Up, Ranks 5th Most Bullish Globally In Q3 – Nielson

Consumers are mainly upbeat about future job prospects, the Nielson survey found.

Consumer confidence in the UAE soared in the third quarter of the year, with the country ranking as the most optimistic in the Middle East and Africa region and the fifth most bullish globally, according to a survey by insights firm Nielson.

The survey found that consumer confidence in the UAE had increased by three points compared to Q2 2014, to reach a score of 112.

“Consumers in the UAE continue to be bullish about future economic prospects,” said Arslan Ashraf, managing director, Nielsen.

“Despite the fact that rising rents are driving inflation north and consumers are mitigating risk via savings, they are still upbeat about future job prospects.”

The global survey, which measured perceptions of local job prospects, personal finances and immediate spending intentions, also found that confidence had grown by three points in Saudi Arabia to reach 105.

“In Saudi Arabia, consumer confidence is steadily heading toward a score of 112, which was last reached in 2012 before a drive to legalise the expat workforce,” said Ashraf.

“The economy is gradually recovering from the challenges posed by the legalisation drive for most of 2013 and the beginning of 2014. However, while confidence is expected to be bullish in the coming days, declining oil prices might pose risks.”

Across the Middle East and Africa region as a whole, quarter-on-quarter discretionary spending intentions rose three percentage points in Q3 for plans to save (39 per cent) and one percentage point each for investing (10 per cent) and spending on holidays/vacations (18 per cent).

However, spending on out-of-home entertainment (19 per cent) and new technology products (18 per cent) dropped by one percentage point each.

Up to 22 per cent of the respondents also said they had no spare cash, a decline of three percentage points and the highest percentage of any region, the report stated.

Globally, the survey found that consumer confidence rose one point in the third quarter to a score of 98 — up from 97 in the previous quarter and up two points from the start of the year.

The latest results reflect an outlook of cautious optimism, as every region’s consumer confidence score improved from the previous quarter, Nielson said.

Consumer confidence in the North America region improved the most, rising four points to 107, Asia-Pacific’s score increased one point to 107, the Middle East and Africa region was up three points (96), Latin America rose one point (91) and Europe also increased one point (78), from the previous quarter.

“Outside of North America, a range of region- and country-specific factors are translating into weaker and more uneven improvements in consumer confidence,” said Louise Keely, senior vice president, Nielsen.

“Europe is being directly affected by the geopolitical crisis in Ukraine, and is also at a critical policy juncture concerning steps to prevent deflation and improve growth.

“Among major emerging economies, while India is displaying renewed potential for accelerating growth from its new government, China is moving in a different direction as it re-orients its economy toward greater domestic consumption.”

The top 10 most optimistic nations in Q3 were: India, Indonesia, Philippines, Thailand, UAE, China, the US, Hong Kong, Saudi Arabia and Denmark.

The Nielsen survey spoke to more than 30,000 respondents in 60 countries.

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