Renewed Confidence in West, Tier 5 Cities Lifts China

Renewed Confidence in West, Tier 5 Cities Lifts China

Chinese consumer confidence continues to build going into 2010, up three points since the third quarter of 2009 and reaching highs not seen since the second half of 2007, according to the latest survey jointly released by The Nielsen Company and the China Economic Monitoring & Analysis Center of the National Bureau of Statistics.

Just one year ago, consumer morale hit an all-time low, and concern for job security and the economy were at the top of peoples’ minds.  With the economy strengthening and consumers feeling better about their job prospects and state of personal finances, work/life balance and health are once again key issues. 

The renewed optimism was driven largely by consumers in western China, who posted an eight point rise in confidence, helping to close the gap between the regions.  Consumers in Tier 5 locales (smaller towns, villages and rural areas) recorded a seven point increase in confidence from the previous quarter, thanks in part to a strong harvest late in the year as well as well-targeted government incentives.  All of this has translated into a renewed willingness to spend as consumers start the New Year.

“We saw a strong rebound in consumers’ willingness to spend, especially among Tier one and Tier five consumers.  Tier one consumers are more likely to be investing in stocks and bonds and planning holidays compared to people in other tier cities,” said Mitch Barns, Greater China President at The Nielsen Company. 

 Nonetheless, more than half of Chinese consumers continue to make it a high priority to put spare cash initially into savings, followed by investing in their children’s education and purchasing new clothing.

 Read the full press release.