Survey shows Singapore consumers more confident despite passing of Lee Kuan Yew

Survey shows Singapore consumers more confident despite passing of Lee Kuan Yew
People pay their respects to the late first prime minister Lee Kuan Yew at a community tribute site in Singapore March 28, 2015.

Singaporeans are more confident about their personal and family finances and the local economy, a survey has found.

The ANZ-Roy Morgan Singapore Consumer Index found that confidence level has increased to 125.7, which is up 1.2 points, in April. It is above the long-term average of 121.7.

29 per cent of respondents said their families are 'better off' financially than a year ago compared to just 8 per cent that said they are 'worse off' financially.

In the same survey, 33 per cent of respondents said they expect their family to be 'better off' financially in a year's time, compared to only 6 per cent that expect to be 'worse off' financially.

In relation to economic conditions in Singapore, 49 per cent of respondents expect the country to have 'good times' financially over the next 12 months. It was the highest for this indicator since July 2014.

Over the longer-term now, 48 per cent of respondents expect Singapore to have 'good times' financially during the next five years. This was the highest for this indicator since July 2014.

Only 8 per cent are expecting 'bad times' financially in the next five years.

18 per cent of respondents also say that now is a 'good time to buy' major household items. This is up 1 point from March. 18 per cent say otherwise, which is down 2 points during the same period.

ANZ Chief Economist South Asia, ASEAN & Pacific, Glenn Maguire said: ""Consumer confidence rose in April despite what we considered to be the considerable uncertainty over the impact on the Singaporean psyche of the passing of the founding father of Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew.

"Prior to his death, consumer confidence appeared to be on a nascent recovery that we feared the passing of Lee Kuan Yew may arrest. Perhaps it is final and fitting tribute to Mr Lee and the solid foundations of the modern Singaporean economy that he has helped create that Singaporean confidence continues to recover despite his death."

Mr Macguire also said that Singapore's economy is "one with a very high integration into the global economy and one of the highest per-capita income levels of any economy in the world."

He commented that as the global economy continues to recover over 2015-16, consumer confidence on the Singapore outlook should continue to rise.

cynloh@sph.com.sg

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