MasterCard survey finds Indians less positive on economy, markets

Mumbai, Oct 29 | Updated: Oct 30 2004, 05:30am hrs
A survey on consumer confidence conducted by MasterCard International has found that Indian consumers have been less positive about the economy, the stock market and the quality of their lifestyle, in the period between February and August this year.

The survey was based on five factors to gauge consumer confidence, including employment, economy, regular income, stock market and quality of life.

Based on the findings of the survey, Indias MasterIndex rating fell to 55.0 in August, from 63.5 in February of this year, out of a possible index of 100.

The companys vice president and general manager, Nitin Gupta said: The MasterIndex survey helps our member financial institutions to understand their customers better. It is also a useful tool in anticipating future market trends and devising better business strategies with which to meet them.

Conducted bi-annually, the survey analysed consumers perceptions on economic conditions over six months from February to August in seven selected markets in the SAMEA Region: South Africa, Egypt, Kuwait, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates (UAE) and India.

The scores, which were based on respondent answers to questions related to the survey, revealed that the fall in Indian consumer confidence was due to consumers being much less positive on quality of life, economy and stock market, with index scores falling by 21.0%; 5.6% and 4.1% respectively. Regular income scores also showed a slight dip of 0.6%.

However, sentiments on employment improved slightly, moving up by 3.8%, although they were still considered pessimistic. The MasterIndex also indicated that Indian consumers were mildly optimistic about the next six months. Of the seven countries researched in the region, Saudi Arabia led the way with a highly optimistic score of 98.4, followed closely by Kuwait (90.6) and UAE (83.0).