Little sign of growth in consumer confidence in Wales

Whilst just over one in ten Welsh adults (12%) say they feel more confident about spending money on non-essential items now compared with six months ago, more than twice as many (30%) say the reverse. For the great majority (56%), there has been no change in confidence levels over the past six months.

1,019 adults aged 16 and over across Wales were asked “Which of these best describes how confident you feel about spending money on non-essential items now compared with six months ago?” during the latest wave of the Beaufort Wales Omnibus survey, conducted in September. They could choose one of the following responses: “I’m a lot more confident now”, “I’m a little more confident now”, “I feel the same now as six months ago”, “I’m a little less confident now” or “I’m a lot less confident now”.



Interestingly, women are noticeably less confident than men – fewer women than men say they feel more confident about spending money on non-essentials now compared with six months ago (10% compared with 15%); conversely a higher proportion of women than men surveyed are less confident now than six months ago (at 34% compared with 27%).

Older people are least likely overall to feel more confident about spending money on non-essential items now than they did six months ago, with just 7% of those aged 55 and over saying this, compared with 15% of 16-34s and 16% of 35-54s.

Consumer confidence appears to be lowest in the South Wales Valleys (that is Blaenau Gwent, Caerphilly, Merthyr Tydfil and Rhondda Cynon Taf local authorities), where just 9% of people (compared with 12% overall across Wales) said they feel more confident in spending money on non-essentials now than six months ago. At the same time the Valleys also has the lowest proportion saying they feel less confident now (at 24% compared with 30% overall). Since the South Wales Valleys have by far the highest proportion of people saying they feel the same about spending now as six months ago (at 64% compared with 56% overall), it appears there has been little change in confidence in this area.

Those in the upper AB socioeconomic groups (that is, those in higher managerial, professional and administrative professions) were the least likely to feel less confident now than six months ago (at 22% compared with 30% overall) but there are no signs that they feel more confident than other groups in the population.
 

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