A poll conducted by Westpac-Melbourne Institute of 1200 people highlighted its index of consumer sentiment rose 4.7 per cent from 97.6 in May to 102.2 points in June. It is the first time the figure has been above 100 points in two months, indicating the majority of people surveyed were optimistic about the economy, family finances and easing concerns about the federal budget.
Westpac senior economist Matthew Hassan has said that, “all components of the consumer sentiment index recorded some improvement between May and June, and the strongest gains were around family finance. It appears that some of the factors behind the sharp drop in sentiment in May were temporary, and in particular, concerns stemming from the Federal Budget may have eased somewhat in June.”
The survey revealed that the outlook for finances over the next 12 months rose 5.3 per cent. This measure has risen a 22.7 per cent on June last year, possibly a reflection of the impact of lower mortgage rates.
The survey has also strongly indicated a positive time for consumers to have more faith in the market with sub-index tracking views on whether it is currently a favourable time to purchase a major household item showing an increase of 3.7 per cent, while indexing tracking views on buying a dwelling, and a car all posting highs of 16 – 20 points.
Mr Hassan has said, that, “the survey shows concern over the Australian economy’s future and a key associated concern is how this may affect job security. News on employment had a lower level of recall but was viewed as deeply unfavourable by consumers in June.”