Portugal consumer confidence high despite economic indicators

0
555
Confidence

The Portuguese Consumer Confidence Index in the final quarter of 2016 rose by eight points to an “all time high” of 74 points, according  to the latest Nielsen Global Consumer Confidence report.

The Portuguese economy gained some momentum in the second half of the year 2016, bringing an overall growth rate to the second highest level in six years, mainly supported by a gradual recovery in exports.

Moreover, private consumption benefited from an improvement in the labour market, even though this was partly offset by an acceleration in inflation.

The level of Portuguese consumer confidence exceeded countries such as Finland, France and Italy .

47% of Portuguese use it to make savings (a figure that is much higher than the European average of 36%) and 11% say they may invest it in a pension fund.

Perceptions of Portuguese consumers have improved significantly to the point that they don’t consider their country to be in economic recession and believe in an economic recovery over the next 12 months.

The public perception of confidence is contradicted by key European Union economic indicators.

The fragile banking sector continues to hold back state and private investment, which has slowed down sharply from 26 % of GDP in 2006 to 14 % by the end of 2016.

GDP growth is also projected to remain low, at about 1 ¼ % in 2017 and 2018.

European Union reports that  Portugal’s high level of public debt, which has risen sharply from 60 % of GDP in 2006 to 130% of GDP at the end of 2016 and the economy’s weak growth rates continue to undermine the investment environment.

There are concerns that this move will cause a further deterioration in the already weak financial situation ,which  the man in the street does not seem to worry too much.

To a certain extent this public feeling of confidence has been boosted by the Portuguese Government optimistic approach to the economic panorama forecasts.

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Os indicadores económicos desfavoráveis revelados pela União Europeia não desmoralizaram a confiança dos consumidores portugueses.

Inquéritos  à opinião púbélica portuguesa, realizados pela ccompanhia de sondagens Nielsen,  revelam que o índice de otimismo  dos consumidores portugueses atingiu no final do passado ano níveis mais altos de sempre.

Este entusiasmo ficará talvez a dever-se ao estilo triunfalista com que a atual governação tem inspirado aos portugueses que agora já acreditam em poupança e em investir em fundos de reforma.

Embora os dados oficiais apresentados pela União Europeia tenham previsto para um crescimento do produtos bruto nacional (GDP) de apenas 1 ¼ % Portugal para os anos  2017 e  2018, os consumidores portugueses continuam a acreditar que a situação económica vai melhorar no decorrer deste ano.

Por outro lado dados financeiros da UE revelam que a fragilidade do sistema bancário português levou a uma descida acentuada no investimento púbélico e privado de  26 % do GDP em 2006 para 14 % em 2016.

Paralelamente a dívida pública ascendeu de 60 % do GDP em 2006 para 130 % em 2016.

São estatísticas que o consumidor português prefere ignorar na esperança de melhores dias.

Jay Fernandes
Master’s Degree G. Ph. from the University of Lisbon. Academic and teacher. Television , radio and press reporter / commentator

LEAVE A REPLY