A consumer confidence fell 6.5 points in September compared to August, in the seasonally adjusted series, reported this Friday the Getulio Vargas Foundation (FGV). The Consumer Confidence Index (ICC) was 75.3 points. In quarterly moving averages, the index dropped 1.9 points to 79.8 points. With the fall of September, the ICC was at its lowest level since April 2021, the height of the second wave of the covid-19 pandemic.
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It was the second consecutive drop in consumer confidence, which, for FGV, “confirms the interruption of the recovery trend started in April, after the second wave of covid”. Also according to FGV, the fall in the September ICC is due to a set of factors, such as accelerating inflation, still high unemployment, the water crisis making the electricity bill more expensive and uncertainties in relation to the economy.
“Pessimism is greater among families with lower purchasing power – whose expectations regarding the evolution of the general economic situation are the worst since April 2016 – but it is widespread among all income groups. The weakness of consumer confidence has been marked by the great distance in relation to business confidence and by the high sensitivity to any new factor, making it very difficult to anticipate any trend for the following months”, says the note released recently by FGV.
In September, there was a worsening both in the perception regarding the present and in the expectations regarding the future. The Current Situation Index (ISA) dropped 1.0 point, to 68.8 points, while the Expectations Index (IE) tumbled 9.8 points, to 81.1 points, the lowest level since last April.
Among the items that make up the ISA, the indicator that measures the perception of consumers in relation to the general economic situation dropped from 2.7 points in September, to 74.5 points. The indicator that measures the evaluations on personal finances “remained relatively stable by varying 0.6 points, to 63.6 points”, informed the FGV.
Among the items that make up the IE, the one that most influenced the drop in the aggregate CCI was the indicator that measures the prospects for the situation of the economy. The indicator dropped 14.3 points, to 97.5 points, the lowest level since last March, when it was 92.1 points). The indicator that measures the prospects for the financial situation of families in the coming months dropped 12.8 points to 79.7 points, the lowest level since May 2020 (71.6 points). Given the pessimism, the indicator of purchase intentions for durable goods dropped 1.3 points, to 68.4 points, interrupting six months of “slow recovery” in the indicator, according to the FGV.
The Consumer Survey collected information from 1,536 households with interviews between September 1st and 21st.