MasterCard International today announced the results of its second MasterIndex of Consumer Confidence survey conducted across South Asia, Middle East and African Region (SAMEA). The survey showed decrease in the overall Indian consumer confidence with India’s MasterIndex ratings falling from 63.5 in February to 58.0 in August, out of a possible index of 100.
Conducted bi-annually, the survey analyses consumers’ perceptions on economic conditions over the next six months in seven selected markets in the SAMEA region, comprising South Africa, Egypt, Kuwait, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and India. The scores are based on respondent answers to questions related to five factors: employment, economy, regular income, stock market and quality of life.
Nitin Gupta, Vice President and General Manager, MasterCard International, South Asia, said, “MasterIndex is a unique initiative that truly exemplifies MasterCard’s thought leadership in the global payments industry. I feel the survey is a very interesting way of studying and understanding consumer sentiments across the region.”
Of the seven countries researched in the region, Saudi Arabia has led the way with a highly optimistic score of 98.4, followed closely by Kuwait (90.6) and United Arab Emirates (83.0). Overall consumer confidence in Egypt and Lebanon remains as low as the previous period with 37.0 and 32.5 scores respectively.
On the survey, Dr Yuwa Hedrick-Wong, Economic Advisor, Asia Pacific MasterCard International, said, “As the Indian economy continues to liberalise and with the sustainability of domestic demand becoming increasingly important, consumer confidence takes centre-stage in driving economic growth. This is a message that must be fully embraced by both policy makers and captains of industry alike.”
The latest round of the MasterIndex result shows that the level of confidence over the outlook of the next six months in India has dipped from 63.5 to 58.0. While a result of 50 and above indicates optimism, 58 is only very mildly optimistic. Three of the five dimensions that have dragged down the result most are the outlook on the economy, the stock market, and the quality of life. This suggests that consumer confidence, and therefore consumer spending in India is affected more than just by the income immediately available, but also by its much broader outlook, including how they see the economy is going and how their own quality of life is changing or failing to change.