JEDDAH: ARAB NEWS
Published — Sunday 7 April 2013
Last update 7 April 2013 4:16 am
Consumers in Saudi Arabia are extremely optimistic in their overall outlook, with a score of 95.2, according to the MasterCard Index of Consumer Confidence. The index measures consumers’ outlook for the coming six months by evaluating 5 different indicators.
“Consumers are optimistic about all indicators, with regular income (98.8) receiving the most positive score, followed by employment (97.6), economy (97.3), stock market (93.5) and quality of life (88.9), Kashif Sohail, MasterCard’s market manager, for Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Pakistan, says.
The MasterCard Index of Consumer Confidence measures consumers’ outlook by assessing their optimism about regular income, employment prospects, the outlook for the economy, the stock market and quality of life, he explained.
The optimism for regular income and employment prospects could have been driven by the government’s recent initiatives to create more jobs for nationals. Consumers’ outlook for the economy is also very positive, with expected growth levels remaining higher than expectations for the global economy. High income levels are also likely to affect consumers’ sentiment on their quality of life, Sohail said.
The index findings indicated that the sentiment among consumers is very optimistic, with a score of 97.3 on their outlook for the economy.
This outlook could have been driven by a number of factors. Among these, a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers report that the Kingdom’s economy, which will treble to $ 3 trillion by 2050, is bound to positively impact consumer sentiment. According to The Economist Intelligence Unit, the market is expected to see 4.3 percent growth in 2013 while the International Monetary Fund (IMF) has forecasted 4.1 percent growth in Saudi Arabia this year.
The overall Saudi Arabia Consumer Confidence score is 95.2, as compared to 90.9 in the previous edition of the index released six months ago.
Compared to the previous edition of the survey, consumers in Saudi Arabia are more optimistic about all indicators.