Consumer pessimism worsens in Vietnam: survey

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Consumer confidence in Vietnam continued to slump in the second quarter as many Vietnamese were worried about high inflation, according to a Nielsen survey.

The local confidence level fell to 97 points, after dipping five points to 98 in the first quarter. Asia Pacific remained the most optimistic region at 98 points, followed by Middle East/Africa at 94 points.

According to the Nielsen Global Online Consumer Confidence Survey, Vietnamese show more pessimism as only 52 percent think their job prospects will be "good" in the next 12 months, a decrease of eight points compared to the previous quarter. 

Inflation is still a challenge as more than half of the surveyed consumers indicate now is not the time to buy the things they want and need. Eighty-eight percent say they have changed their spending habits.

Nielsen said the story has also worsened globally. More consumers are feeling cash strapped as the cost of living, including rising food and energy prices, continues to squeeze household budgets.

"There wasn't enough positive news to inspire confidence among global online consumers in the second quarter," said Venkatesh Bala, Chief Economist at The Cambridge Group, a part of Nielsen.

"Weak economic figures, slowing manufacturing performance in Asia, intensifying debt crisis in Europe and political instability in the Middle East combined with rising household expenses and food inflation all took its toll on consumers' fragile confidence," Bala said

India remained the most optimistic country in the second quarter with 131 index points, followed by Saudi Arabia and Indonesia.

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