13 Oct 2016

Consumer confidence rises to strongest since mid-2015

6:04 pm on 13 October 2016

Consumer confidence has risen to its strongest in more than a year driven by a solid economy, high house prices, and low unemployment.

retail spending

retail spending Photo: 123rf

The ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Index has risen a couple of points to 122.9 this month, the highest since the middle of last year.

A reading above 100 indicates optimism.

Consumers were a touch less positive about their own outlook, but much more optimistic about the short- and long-term outlooks for the economy.

ANZ chief economist Cameron Bagrie said the lift in consumer confidence was no real surprise.

"The economy is performing well, jobs are getting easier to find, and consumers are feeling pretty good.

"Strong consumer confidence will underpin spending over coming months."

A net 35 percent said they thought it was a good time to buy a big ticket item, but respondents were expecting the growth in prices to slow down, and also expected inflation pressures to ease over the next couple of years.

Mr Bagrie said putting consumer confidence together with recent business sentiment pointed to economic growth touching 4 percent.

Get the new RNZ app

for ad-free news and current affairs