Typhoon Yolanda sparks cautious optimism

Typhoon Yolanda sparks cautious optimism


The latest Global Survey of Consumer Confidence shows that while typhoon Yolanda has dampened confidence in the fourth quarter of 2013, with consumer confidence declining three points to 114, the Philippines is still home to one of the world’s most optimistic consumers. 

This confidence, however, is marked with increased cautiousness.

“Filipino consumers are now examining their personal finances closely and are becoming more cautiously optimistic and dynamic in their choices around spending and saving,” said Stuart Jamieson, managing director of Nielsen Philippines.

After covering essential living expenses, 68 percent of Filipino consumers channel excess funds into savings.

Filipino consumers are increasingly diligent when it comes to keeping a check on their general household expenses. Eighty-five percent of Filipino respondents said that compared to last year they have changed their spending to save on household expenses. This is a five-point increase versus last quarter and a seven-point increase from the same quarter last year. Spending on clothing, saving on gas and electricity, delaying technology upgrades, switching to cheaper grocery brands and cutting down on take-away meals and out-of-home entertainment were the most commonly cited areas where Filipino consumers would cut back to save on household expenses.

While there are consumers who tuck away a portion of their gains for the future, there are also consumers who remain open to experiencing and enjoying their hard earned cash.

Twenty-eight percent of Filipino respondents said that they plan to spend their spare cash on holidays and vacations, an increase of three points versus previous quarter.