Asia Business Channel

Vietnam’s consumer confidence at its highest level in 10 years

Vietnam’s consumer confidence level has reached its highest level in the last 10 years and Vietnam is now considered the #2 country in the world for consumer confidence.
According to the latest issue of The Conference Board Global Consumer Confidence Survey, conducted in collaboration with global researchers Nielsen.

With confidence growing for future employment and personal finances, Vietnamese consumer confidence in the third quarter of this year, increased nine points over the second quarter and has reached its highest level during the last decade.

The report also showed that the Consumer Confidence Index in the Asia Pacific region remained high, rising 2 points from 112 points in the second quarter to 114 in the third quarter of 2018. The Index of Vietnam and Malaysia were 129 points and 127 points respectively, surpassing Indonesia and the Philippines to become among the top three most confident countries globally.

At the same time, Malaysia and Thailand are the two countries with the highest growth rate, up 10 percentage points and this is also the dominant growth in the world. Indonesia and the Philippines have a slight down, with 126 (-1 point), and Singapore retained the growth rate of 98 points (up 4 points from Q2 2018 and Q3 2017).

"Vietnam Consumer Confidence in the third quarter of 2018 was significantly higher than Q3 2017 (116 with 129) and reached a record 9-point gain over Q2 2018. The strong growth is a consequence of the confidence of personal finances as well as the level of willingness to spend by the Vietnamese. Thereby, we can realize the consumer change in a more positive way for themselves and their families. Therefore, manufacturers and retailers need to capture the latest trends in the consumer market and need to act faster to respond to the needs of consumers”, Nguyen Huong Quynh, Managing Director Nielsen Vietnam noted.

Vietnam consumers continue to be optimistic about their personal finances, with 82 percent saying their personal finances are good or excellent over the next 12 months (+ 6% vs. Q2) and at the same time they are ready to spend with 63% of consumers certainly saying that the next 12 months is a good time for them to buy the things that they want and need. (+ 8% compared to Q2).

A stable job and good health remained the top concerns of Vietnamese

Consumers’ concern on having a stable job (40%) and health (40%) has decreased compared to Q2 2018 (-6% and -2% respectively) but remain the top concerns among Vietnamese consumers in Q3 2018. Meanwhile, 27% of respondents (+5% compared to Q2 2018) said that the national economy is their third concern.

The following concerns are work/life balance (25%, +3% compared to Q2 2018), parent’s welfare (13%, +2% vs. Q2 2018) and increasing utility bills (9%, -2% compared to Q2 2018). See chart 3.

"Although the job stability and health are the two biggest concerns of Vietnamese consumers, compared with the previous quarter, the interest in these two factors in Q3 2018 has more influence from the economy, from family and daily living expenses. This means that when consumers face multiple concerns, their purchasing decisions will be affected accordingly. Thus, businesses must always keep a close track on changes in spending of consumers." Quynh said.

Consumers continue to save for the future but they are more willing to spend on big-ticket items

Globally, Southeast Asian consumers still take the lead when it comes to saving and this intention has not changed in the last two years. But compared with last year, consumers have made more positive changes, even though they spend the bulk of their savings (+6% vs. Q3 2017) go shopping for new clothes or upgrade their cozy space or spend money and time to enjoy out of home entertainment (+ 7%, + 10%, + 3% compared to Q2 2018, corresponding to each category).

Compared with the previous quarter, the expenditure on premium health insurance packages was unchanged but also at a high level compared to last year (+13%). Spending more time with their own health and family, taking a good look at their monthly expenses.

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