The Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions, measures consumer confidence, major concerns and spending intentions of more than 30,000 respondents with internet access in 63 countries.
Consumer confidence levels above and below a baseline of 100 indicate degrees of optimism and pessimism, a press release said.
Pakistan started the year with a consumer confidence score of 104 for the first quarter, reaching its highest level since 2008.
The statement says: “Recessionary sentiment has decreased from 71pc in fourth quarter of 2015 to 69pc in the first quarter of 2016. One in every two respondents is optimistic about their job prospects in the next 12 months. Six in every 10 Pakistani respondents were confident that personal finances would be good or excellent in the next 12 months, a rise of four percentage points from the previous quarter”.
“We have witnessed consumer confidence going around the same range in the past year, with the index consistently reported being above the optimism baseline as Pakistan’s economic reforms progress and security conditions improve, which have resulted in an increase in foreign investment. Pakistan is a key beneficiary of low global oil prices due to its high level of oil import.
This has led to a low inflation environment and allowed consumers to benefit from low domestic petrol prices.
“As a result, consumers feel more secure about their personal finances as they are left with extra cash and have the capacity to save. The findings also showed that consumers’ immediate spending intentions rose by one-point (42pc) from the previous quarter. Pakistan’s improved business environment and positive consumer sentiments have led to a favourable atmosphere as depicted by the consumer confidence index,” the statement said.
Three countries reported a consumer confidence score of 104 for Q1 2016: UAE, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan. These countries are also among the top 10 countries with highest consumer confidence scores globally. For the UAE, the score was a four-point drop from the previous quarter; Saudi Arabia showed a two-point decrease; and Pakistan increased by one point from the previous quarter.
The per capita income of the country has also increased by three percent in the ongoing fiscal year to reach to 1563 US dollars.
Global consumer confidence remained stable in the first quarter and below the optimism baseline score of 100, edging up one index point to 98. The score reflected mixed confidence levels in every region. In the latest Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions, consumer confidence increased in 33pc of measured markets, compared to 43% of measured markets showing an increase in the fourth quarter of 2015.