Matters Elsewhere Impacting on Australian Consumer Confidence

Consumers have been spooked by global financial turmoil, and business managers could soon also get the shakes.  Consumer confidence sagged in July to its lowest point in seven months, dragged down by disturbing financial headlines from Greece and China.

The Westpac/Melbourne Institute index out Wednesday showed consumer sentiment fell by 3.2 per cent in July, after dropping nearly seven per cent in June.  “The concerns around Greece have been complemented by sensational coverage of the collapse in the Chinese share market,” Westpac chief economist Bill Evans said.

And although business confidence jumped to a near two-year high in June, it is likely to be dented by China’s financial troubles, too.  National Australia Bank’s confidence barometer rose two points in June to 10 points – its highest level since September 2013.  But the survey was conducted before the culmination of Greece’s debt crisis, and the recent volatility on China’s mainland equity market.