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Consumer confidence down in New Zealand

Christian Fernsby |
Consumer confidence remains low in New Zealand, with palpable nervousness about long term prospects pushing it back down to the levels of a year ago.

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Topics: NEW ZEALAND   

The Westpac-McDermott Miller quarterly survey showed a fall in consumer confidence of 0.8 points to 105.2. The score is below the long-term average and is a decline from a sharp rebound at the end of last year.

The number of people who said they were worse off financially fell slightly, to 11.7 percent, but longer term a net 15 percent expected to be better off in a year's time.

However, a clear divide was emerging between age groups, with those aged 18 to 29 markedly more pessimistic than other age groups.

The number who thought it was a good time to buy a major household item fell from a net 6.5 percent in December to 4.2 percent, while the number who would spend a $10,000 cash windfall was up from a year ago, reflecting the fall in interest rates.

Consumer confidence was mixed around the country with falls in Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Gisborne-Hawkes Bay, and the top of the South Island.

Wellington was the most bullish city because of its low reliance on international tourism and the stability that came with public sector employment.

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