Shanghai consumer confidence dip in Q1 but optimism still prevails

The Index of Consumer Confidence in Shanghai came in slightly lower at 118.1 points but a reading above 100 points indicates optimism.

Shanghai consumer confidence dipped in the first quarter of the year from the previous quarter but optimism still prevailed, while investor confidence was unchanged, a survey showed.

The Index of Consumer Confidence in Shanghai, a quarterly gauge compiled by the Shanghai University of Finance and Economics, shed 5.7 points from the fourth quarter of last year to 118.1 points in the January-March quarter, down 0.9 points from the same period last year.

A reading above 100 points indicates optimism.

The international political and economic situations are unpredictabe, said Xu Guoxiang, director of the university’s Applied Statistics Research Center, and deputy directors Cui Chang and Wu Chunjie.

Factors including trade friction between China and the US posed uncertainties for consumer expectations for the economy, the report said.

The component index measuring intention by residents to buy homes remained the same as the previous quarter at 58.3 points but dipped 2.8 points from the same period last year. Meanwhile, consumer intention to buy cars fell sharply by 9.6 points from the 2017 October-December period and was down by 9.7 points year on year.

"The Third Plenary Session of the 19th CPC Central Committee pushed forward deepening reform, improving efficiency of the government and ensuring the economy is able to handle risks," Xu said. "This helped lift consumer confidence and offset the negative influence from the binternational economic environment."

The Index of Investor Confidence was flat in the first three months at 112.46 points from the fourth quarter in 2017, while it grew 2.21 points on a year-on-year basis.

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