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Latest publication: Consumer Confidence 2019, October

Published: 27 April 2009

Consumer confidence strengthened slightly in April

The gradual recovery of consumers' confidence continued in April. The consumer confidence indicator stood at 1.0 in April, having been -1.5 in March and -3.9 in February. At its lowest in December 2008 the confidence indicator was -6.5. Confidence in the economy was negative since October 2008 and before that during the recession years of the early 1990s. The data are based on Statistics Finland's Consumer Survey for which 1,494 persons resident in Finland were interviewed between 1 and 17 April.

Two components of the consumer confidence indicator relating to the general economic situation showed slight improvement from the previous month in April. However, expectations concerning Finland's economy and unemployment continued to be low. Consumers continued to assess their saving possibilities as good, and expressed some optimism about their own economic situation. In April, the time was considered even more favourable than before for raising a loan and especially for purchasing durable goods. Consumers predicted a clearly lower inflation rate for the next 12 months in April than in the months before.

Consumer views on the economic and financial conditions in Finland in April 2009, balances*

  Average
10/95-
Max.
10/95-
Min.
10/95-
April
2008
March
2009
April
2009
Situation**
Consumer confidence indicator (CCI) 13.0 21.8 -6.5 12.6 -1.5 1.0 - -
CCI components:              
Own economic situation
in 12 months' time
9.2 14.1 2.3 9.3 3.4 3.4 - -
Households' saving possibilities
in the next 12 months
35.9 52.0 10.9 49.2 50.3 45.3 +
Finland's economic situation
in 12 months time
3.8 21.7 -27.1 -12.9 -13.6 -2.7 -
Finland's unemployment situation
in 12 months time
3.2 27.6 -51.1 5.0 -46.1 -42.0 - -
Others:              
Inflation
in 12 months' time, per cent
2.1 4.6 0.7 3.7 1.8 1.4  
Own threat of unemployment
at present
2.6 7.6 -18.8 7.3 -18.8 -15.1 - -
Financial situation of household
at present
26.6 35.1 14.7 31.4 33.5 31.6 +
Favourable time to make major purchases
at present
19.9 37.7 -14.2 24.6 25.5 31.3 ++
Favourable time to save
at present
10.9 36.8 -19.6 33.1 9.4 6.8 -
Favourable time to raise a loan
at present
18.0 42.0 -47.1 1.3 7.6 9.0 -
* The balance figures are obtained by deducting the weighted proportion of negative answers from that of positive answers. The consumer confidence indicator is the average of the balance figures for the CCI components. The balance figures and the confidence indicator can range between -100 and 100 - the higher the balance figure, the brighter the view on the economy.
** ++ Situation is very good, + Situation is good, - Situation is bad, - - Situation is very bad. Deviation of balance from average has been compared to standard deviation.

In April, 35 per cent of consumers believed that Finland's economic situation would improve in the coming twelve months, while 34 per cent of them thought that the country's economy would deteriorate. The corresponding proportions were 25 and 45 per cent in March and 15 and 39 per cent one year ago. In all, 21 per cent of consumers believed in April that their own economy would improve while 15 per cent of them feared it would worsen over the year. One year ago the same proportions were 28 and 13 per cent.

Only 10 per cent of consumers thought in April that unemployment would decrease over the year, while 75 per cent of them believed it would increase. Twelve months earlier the respective proportions were 38 and 28 per cent. Just 8 per cent of employed persons believed in April that their personal threat of unemployment had lessened over the past few months, whereas 32 per cent thought it had grown. Twelve months earlier the respective proportions were 16 and 9 per cent. In April, 43 per cent of employed persons thought the threat had remained unchanged and 17 per cent felt that they were not threatened by unemployment at all.

Consumers predicted in April that consumer prices would go up by 1.4 per cent over the next 12 months. The respective figure was at its highest in June 2008, at 4.6 per cent. The long-term predicted average inflation rate is 2.1 per cent.

Altogether 55 per cent of consumers considered saving worthwhile in April. Twelve months earlier the corresponding percentage was 77. Sixty-five per cent of households had been able to lay aside some money and 79 per cent believed they would be able to do so during the next 12 months. Households mostly save for a rainy day. The most usual investment targets after fixed-term and investment accounts are insurance, and mutual funds in which interest has died down slightly this year.

In April, 56 per cent of consumers regarded the time good for raising a loan. At its lowest last October the proportion was only 13 per cent. In April, 14 per cent of households were planning to take out a loan within one year.

In April, 58 per cent of consumers thought the time was favourable for buying durable goods. One year earlier the respective share was 48 per cent and at its lowest last October it stood at 30 per cent. In April, many households had plans to spend money on, among other things, home repairs and furnishings during the next six months. In the next twelve months, 14 per cent of households were fairly or very certain to buy a car and 8 per cent a dwelling. In April last year, the respective proportions were 19 and 8 per cent.

Consumer confidence indicator (CCI) 10/1995-4/2009

Consumers' micro and macro indicators 10/1995-4/2009*

* Micro indicator is the average of three balances: own economy and household's saving possibilities in 12 months' time, and household's financial situation at present.
Macro indicator is the average of two balance figures: Finland's economy and unemployment in 12 months' time.

Deviation of CCI from country average in EU member states, March 2009*

* Calculated from seasonally adjusted series. Average: 10/1995-. Data for Ireland missing.
Source: European Commission, DG ECFIN, Business and Consumer Survey Results, March 2009
http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/db_indicators/db_indicators8650_en.htm

Source: Consumer Survey 2009, April. Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Mr Pertti Kangassalo +358 9 1734 3598,kuluttaja.barometri@stat.fi

Director in charge: Mr Ari Tyrkkö

Consumer Confidence 2009, April (pdf 198.9 kB)

Tables

Tables in databases


Last updated 27.4.2009

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Consumer Confidence [e-publication].
ISSN=2669-8889. April 2009. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 20.11.2019].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/kbar/2009/04/kbar_2009_04_2009-04-27_tie_001_en.html