The rising cost of living continues to cast a shadow over daily life for most consumers in New Zealand, according to the latest EY Future Consumer Index.
The 13th edition of the EY Future Consumer Index (FCI 13) shows around nine in 10 New Zealand consumers are cautious, concerned or downright pessimistic about their financial position.
In October, EY teams surveyed more than 22,000 consumers in 28 countries, including 500 in New Zealand. The research provides extensive insight into consumer behaviour, with a deep dive into spending intentions around the end-of-year sales season.
The December quarter is always the busiest1 in New Zealand and fortifies retailers for the leaner winter months. But four in 10 New Zealand consumers (41%) are expecting to spend less this festive season than they have in previous years. Nearly half (49%) said they plan to shop less for non-essentials and close to three quarters (72%) said they will be more focused on value for money in the future.
While our litmus test of consumer sentiment was taken before the recent general election, the trendline is pointing in a clear direction. Nearly two thirds (62%) of consumers expect the cost of living to rise further in the next six months, and they are responding by tightening their belts.