Just when you thought it was safe to declare the consumer dead, Roy Morgan late yesterday released its second weekly poll for the new year and boom, up she goes to a two year high:
Gary Morgan sees it this way:
Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence has continued its positive start to 2013 — jumping another 5.7pts to 124.0 — its highest level for more than two years since January 8/9, 2011. Driving the rise are strong increases in sentiment about personal financial situations and also that now is a ‘good time to buy’ major household items — 63% (up 7%) — the highest for more than 12 months.
“The resolution of the so-called ‘Fiscal Cliff’ in the United States has given a definite boost to investors worldwide and locally with the All Ordinaries rising to 4,760 (up almost 100pts this year) — at its highest level since May 2011, and the Australian Dollar strengthening to almost $1.06 USD (up from under $1.04USD at the end of 2012) — both additional indicators of rising confidence in Australia.
Well, if that’s the case then I see why Westpac does it monthly. Both surveys captured all of the recent good news. Still, the two series have matched reasonably well in the past and both have been in the same shallow uptrend since Bill Evans burst the RBA’s hawkish bubble mid 2011.
Perhaps the divergence is seasonal. Then again, it may be that Roy Morgan will lead Westpac. We shall see.
Just in case you’re wondering what drives consumer confidence, check out the below two charts. First, ABS 8 City House Prices vs Westpac:
Pretty impressive. But if that’s not enough, check out the more sensitive RPData Index vs Westpac:
That’s what I call correlation. Not sure which drives which of course.