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ANZ-Roy Morgan Consumer Confidence for Australian economy fell 1.7% last week, to its lowest level in more than four years, notes the research team at ANZ.

Key Quotes

“A drop in confidence at the start of the year is unusual and almost certainly reflects the impact of the catastrophic bush fires over the weekend.”

“Consistent with this, the weakness in confidence was due to a big drop in the economic outlook, while sentiment toward personal financial circumstances actually rose. ‘Current economic conditions’ were down by a massive 12.9%, while ‘future economic conditions’ fell 8.1%. Current economic conditions are at their lowest level since the global financial crisis, while sentiment toward the future economic outlook is at its lowest level since 1994.”

“In contrast, financial conditions gained. ‘Current finances’ rose 4% while ‘future finances’ were up 0.3%.”

“The ‘Time to buy a household item’ gained 4.8%, recovering from a fall of 6.4% seen in the last reading of the previous year. The four-week moving average of ‘inflation expectations’ was stable at 4.0%, though weekly readings saw a sharp fall, which should result in a weaker reading in the coming week.”