Canadian Consumer Confidence Falls Sharply Amidst Lower Employment and Falling Housing Prices

TORONTO, Feb. 21, 2013 /CNW/ - Canadian Consumer Confidence fell sharply this month, and was the latest economic indicator to drop this week*, along with employment, the housing market, and the Canadian dollar.

According to the latest consumer confidence survey conducted by TNS, the Canadian Consumer Confidence Index fell sharply in February, tumbling from 99.1 to 95.5, its lowest level since August.

"Canadians are feeling the effects of a number of adverse economic developments coming together at the same time. Employment is down, the housing market has 'cooled off' with fewer home sales, and Canadians continue to be wary of high debt." explained Norman Baillie-David, Senior Vice President of TNS in Canada and Director of the Marketing and Social research firm's monthly tracking study.

"Any one of these can be cause for concern, but with fewer Canadians working, fewer buying or selling houses, and more holding off on incurring debt to make major purchases, it's conspiring for quite the gloomy outlook. In summary, Canadians aren't happy campers about the economy this month."

The Present Situation Index, which measures how people feel about the economy right now, plunged almost six full points, falling from 99.8 to 93.9, fuelling the pessimism that Canadians' are feeling about the situation right now.

The Expectations Index, which measures people's outlook for the economy six months from now, was the one sub-index which remained relatively stable, dropping only 0.3 points, which in fact should be interpreted as no drop at all in statistical terms.  This shows that although Canadians aren't feeling good about their personal economic situation right now, they're adopting a 'wait and see' approach to their future expectations.

The Buy Index, which measures the extent to which Canadians feel that now is a good time to purchase a "big ticket item" such as a car or a major household appliance, dropped 3.6 points in February, falling to its lowest point since October 2010, and showing its largest single month drop in two years.

"With employment down, the housing market down, and lingering concerns over debt-levels, Canadians this month have decided they'll put their wallets away, which unfortunately has the potential to make the situation worse."  continued Mr. Baillie-David.

*http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/130208/dq130208a-eng.htm, http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/story/2013/02/18/business-housing-market-carney.html

Full report with charts available at:
http://www.tnscanada.ca/news/2013.02.21-CCI-Tracking-2013-02.pdf

Consumer Confidence Index tracks Canadians' attitudes about the economy each month and is part of a global study conducted by TNS in 18 countries. Three indices are produced each month to show how confidence in the economy is changing: Present Situation Index; an Expectations Index; and a Buy Index.

The Canadian fieldwork is conducted using the firm's national bi-weekly telephone omnibus service, TNS Express Telephone.  A total of 1,015 nationally representative Canadian adults were interviewed between February 11 and February 14, 2013. For a survey sample of this size, the margin of sampling error is plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

About TNS and Kantar

TNS (www.tnscanada.ca) is the Canadian arm of TNS Global. TNS advises clients on specific growth strategies around new market entry, innovation, brand switching and stakeholder management, based on long-established expertise and market-leading solutions. With a presence in over 80 countries, TNS has more conversations with the world's consumers than anyone else and understands individual human behaviours and attitudes across every cultural, economic and political region of the world.

TNS is part of Kantar, one of the world's largest insight, information and consultancy groups.

Please visit www.tnsglobal.com for more information.

Kantar is one of the world's largest insight, information and consultancy groups. By uniting the diverse talents of its 13 specialist companies, the group aims to become the pre-eminent provider of compelling and inspirational insights for the global business community. Its 28,500 employees work across 100 countries and across the whole spectrum of research and consultancy disciplines, enabling the group to offer clients business insights at each and every point of the consumer cycle. The group's services are employed by over half of the Fortune Top 500 companies. 

Please visit www.kantar.com for more information.


SOURCE: TNS

For further information:

Norman Baillie-David, MBA, CMRP
Vice President
(613) 230-4408 x101
norman.baillie-david@tnsglobal.com
@NBaillieDavid
www.tnscanada.ca
@TNSCanada

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TNS

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