Consumer confidence has fallen, handing back the gains made in previous weeks. The ANZ/Roy Morgan weekly consumer confidence index fell 0.4 per cent to 112.5 in the first full week of August, after gaining 5.5 per cent in the previous three weeks.
Households’ views of their personal finances fell 2.7 per cent last week, after recently hitting the highest level since the ANZ survey began in October 2008. ANZ chief economist Warren Hogan said that while the decline was modest, it was disappointing that confidence levels were yet to bounce back to the heights reached before worries about Greek government debt and Chinese market volatility hurt sentiment.
“Sentiment towards the future, particularly the medium- to long-term outlook for the economy, is extremely weak,” he said. “The Australian consumer remains highly vulnerable to a negative economic or financial shock.” Mr Hogan said the outlook for consumer confidence was uncertain because the boost that the strong housing market was giving the retail sector wouldn’t be sustained.