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Latest publication: Consumer Confidence 2019, November

Published: 27 October 2015

Consumers’ confidence in their own economy weakened in October

Consumers’ confidence in the economy has weakened further. The consumer confidence indicator (CCI) stood at 1.3 in October, having been 4.2 in September and 8.3 in August. In last year’s October the CCI received the value 0.4. The long-term average for the CCI is 11.7. The data are based on Statistics Finland’s Consumer Survey, for which 1,299 people resident in Finland were interviewed between 1 and 19 October.

Consumer confidence indicator (CCI)

Consumer confidence indicator (CCI)

Of the four components of the CCI, consumers' views concerning their own economy and household’s saving possibilities, weakened in October compared with September. Views on Finland’s economy and of unemployment remained unchanged but gloomy. Consumers' views concerning their own economy were weak in October and assessments concerning their own saving possibilities were on the long term average level.

In October, consumers did not consider the time very favourable for raising a loan or buying durable goods, and, in particular, not for saving. In October, employed consumers felt personally more threatened by unemployment than on average, as was the case also in September and one year ago.

Consumers' own and Finland's economy

In October, 27 per cent of consumers believed that Finland’s economic situation would improve in the coming twelve months, while more, or 37 per cent, of them thought that the country’s economy would deteriorate. Twelve months previously, the corresponding proportions were 21 and 35 per cent in October.

In October, 22 per cent of consumers believed that their own economy would improve and 18 per cent of them feared it would worsen over the year. In September, the respective proportions were 24 and 16 per cent and twelve months ago 22 and 14 per cent.

Consumers' expectations concerning their own and Finland's economy in 12 months' time

Consumers' expectations concerning their own and Finland's economy in 12 months' time

Unemployment and inflation

Only 12 per cent of consumers thought in October that unemployment would decrease over the year, while 60 per cent of them believed it would increase. Twelve months earlier the respective proportions were even more pessimistic at 9 and 68 per cent.

Twelve per cent of employed persons reckoned in October that their personal threat of unemployment had lessened over the past few months, while 21 per cent thought it had grown. Twenty-four per cent of employed persons felt that they were not threatened by unemployment at all.

Consumers predicted in October that consumer prices would go up by 1.2 per cent over the next 12 months. In September, the predicted inflation rate was 1.5 per cent, and its long-term average is 2.2 per cent.

Buying of durable goods

In October, 44 per cent of consumers thought the time was favourable for buying durable goods. Sixteen per cent of households were fairly or very certain to buy a car and only five per cent a dwelling during the next 12 months. Nineteen per cent of households were planning to spend money on renovating their dwelling within a year.

Saving and taking out a loan

In all, 50 per cent of consumers considered saving worthwhile in October. In all, 62 per cent of households had been able to lay aside some money and 74 per cent believed they would be able to do so during the next 12 months. Households mostly save for a rainy day or for holiday making. After the popular fixed-term or investment accounts, the most common investment targets are investment funds.

In October, 58 per cent of consumers regarded the time good for raising a loan. Fewer households than normal, or 11 per cent of them, were planning in October to raise a loan within one year.

Consumer confidence by major region and population group

In October, Northern Finland and Greater Helsinki had a brighter view of the economy than the rest of the country. Among population groups, upper-level salaried employees were clearly most optimistic. Pensioners and unemployed persons had the gloomiest expectations concerning economic development.

Consumers' views of the economy

  Average 10/1995- Max. 10/1995- Min. 10/1995- 10/2014 09/2015 10/2015 Outlook
A1 Consumer confidence indicator, CCI = (B2+B4+B7+D2)/4 11,7 22,9 -6,5 0,4 4,2 1,3 --
B2 Own economy in 12 months' time (balance) 8,4 14,1 2,3 4,9 4,8 2,5 --
B4 Finland's economy in 12 months' time (balance) 3,1 25,3 -27,1 -10,2 -9,5 -8,7 --
B6 Inflation in 12 months' time (per cent) 2,2 4,6 0,6 1,6 1,5 1,2  
B7 Unemployment in Finland in 12 months' time (balance) -3,6 27,6 -51,1 -33,7 -28,3 -27,7 --
B8 Own threat of unemployment now (balance) -1,2 7,6 -18,8 -7,5 -3,7 -5,7 -
C1 Favourability of time for purchasing durables (balance) 18,2 41,8 -14,2 11,4 15,5 15,6 =
C2 Favourability of time for saving (balance) 10,7 36,8 -19,6 5,1 5,2 2,5 -
C3 Favourability of time for raising a loan (balance) 16,9 42,0 -47,1 13,8 14,3 14,4 =
D2 Household's saving possibilities in the next 12 months (balance) 39,1 52,2 10,9 40,5 49,7 39,1 =

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 (positive) balance figure, the brighter the view on the economy.

Explanations for Outlook column: ++ Outlook is very good, + Outlook is good, = Outlook is neutral, - Outlook is poor, -- Outlook is very poor. Deviation of balance from average has been compared to standard deviation.

The population and sample of the Survey

The population of the Consumer Survey comprises 4.5 million persons aged 15 to 84 and their 2.6 million households in Finland. The gross size of the monthly sample of the Survey is 2,350 persons. In October 2015, the non-response rate of the Consumer Survey was 44.7 per cent. The non-response rate includes those who refused from the survey or were otherwise prevented from participating, as well as those who could not be contacted.

EU results

The (seasonally adjusted) Consumer Survey results for all EU countries are released on the European Commission website: European Commission, DG ECFIN, Business and Consumer Survey Results; http://ec.europa.eu/economy_finance/db_indicators/surveys/index_en.htm


Source: Consumer Survey 2015, October. Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Pertti Kangassalo 029 551 3598, consumer.survey@stat.fi

Director in charge: Jari Tarkoma

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Updated 27.10.2015

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Consumer Confidence [e-publication].
ISSN=2669-8889. October 2015. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 14.12.2019].
Access method: http://www.stat.fi/til/kbar/2015/10/kbar_2015_10_2015-10-27_tie_001_en.html