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Australia consumer confidence eases in April, consistent with good economic momentum

Consumer confidence in Australia eased during the month of April, although remaining consistent with good economic momentum, with Auckland recording the largest fall. However, inflation and house price expectations both lifted.

The ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence Index eased from 125.2 to 121.7 in April. That is still above average and doesn’t look like anything more than monthly ping pong. It takes consumer confidence back to the levels seen in September last year, ANZ Research reported.

The Current and Future Conditions Indexes eased 3 and 4 points respectively. At 123.2 and 120.8, the levels for both indexes remain respectable.  Consumers still feel better off, though marginally less so. A net 9 percent feel better off financially compared with a year ago, down from a net 13 percent last month.

Net optimism towards the economy one year out eased from +21 to +14 and when assessing the five-year outlook, was marked lower from +22 to +15. However, respondents’ views towards their own financial situation in 12 months’ time lifted a touch to a net +33 percent.

Meanwhile, despite a slowing housing market, house price inflation expectations lifted again, weighing on first home buyer aspirations. The move from 4.6 percent to 5.2 percent is not a major surprise but the 18-24 year age group came in at 8.5 percent, which is the highest seen in this group since the series began.

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