Canadian consumers upbeat about the economy's future: survey



    TORONTO, Aug. 13 /CNW/ - The latest results from TNS Canadian Facts'
Consumer Confidence Index suggest that a growing number of Canadians are
upbeat about the prospects for the national economy and employment situation
in six months. The overall index now stands at 99.2, up six per cent from
July's 93.4 reading.
    "Bank of Canada governor Mark Carney declared last month that the
recession is over. While unemployed Canadians may not agree with this
assessment, the fact is consumer confidence has been trending upward since it
fell to an all-time low last December. The gains that we have observed just in
the past month are particularly notable," said Dr. Michael Antecol,
vice-president of TNS Canadian Facts and director of the marketing research
firm's monthly tracking study.
    Each of the three indices that produce the overall index posted sizeable
increases in August. The Present Situation Index, which captures evaluations
of the overall state of the current economic and employment situations,
reached 83.4 - a jump of 4.3 points from last month's 79.1. Similarly, the Buy
Index, which gauges the degree to which people think the current period is a
good time to make major purchases, gained five points - moving from 103.2 in
July to 108.3 in August.
    Finally, and perhaps most importantly, the Expectations Index, which
measures consumers' estimation of the economy, household income and employment
in the next six months, posted an eye-popping 8.5 point rise, leaping from
102.6 in July to 111.1 in August.
    "Canadians are increasingly optimistic. Their battered investment
portfolios have recovered somewhat since last fall, housing prices are up in
several markets, and the key lending rate is at historic lows. The current
environment is not bad for gainfully employed Canadians with equity in housing
and RRSPs, and several years to go before they retire," added Dr. Antecol.
    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 August 3 and 6, 2009.
For a survey sample this size, the margin of sampling error is plus or minus
3.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.
    TNS Canadian Facts (www.tns-cf.com) is one of Canada's most prestigious
full-service marketing, opinion and social research organizations.

    About TNS

    TNS, who recently merged with Research International, is the world's
largest custom research agency delivering actionable insights and
research-based business advice to its clients so they can make more effective
business decisions. TNS offers comprehensive industry knowledge within the
Consumer, Technology, Finance, Automotive and Political & Social sectors,
supported by a unique product offering that stretches across the entire range
of marketing and business issues, specializing in product development &
innovation, brand & communication, stakeholder management, retail & shopper,
and qualitative research. Delivering best-in-class service across more than 70
countries, TNS is part of Kantar, the world's largest research, insight and
consultancy network. Please visit www.tnsglobal.com for more information.





For further information:

For further information: Media Contacts: Dr. Michael Antecol, Vice
President, Tel: (604) 668-3306, e-mail: michael.antecol@tns-global.com; David
Stark, Vice President, Public Affairs, Tel: (416) 924-5751 x238, e-mail:
david.stark@tns-global.com

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