Consumer Sentiment Ticks Up for a 6th Straight Week in Canada

(Bloomberg) -- Consumer confidence continues to show signs of improving in Canada, inching higher for a sixth straight week.

The Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index, based on a random survey, ticked up slightly to 41 last week, from 39.5 a week earlier. While the index remains near its worst-ever readings recorded in April, the rise in confidence is consistent with other data that suggest economic activity is resuming as the country gradually reopens from Covid-19 restrictions.

In a welcome surprise, Canada created nearly 290,000 jobs in May, Statistics Canada said on Friday. Economists had been expecting a loss of half a million positions.

Every week, Nanos Research surveys 250 Canadians for their views on personal finances, job security and their outlook for the economy and real estate prices. Bloomberg publishes four-week rolling averages of the 1,000 responses. The index averaged 57 in the year prior to the crisis.

Consumer Sentiment Ticks Up for a 6th Straight Week in Canada
  • Canadians are increasingly buying into the idea that impact of the pandemic has peaked, with 15.2% saying they believe the economy will strengthen over the next six months. Pessimists still outnumber optimists by almost five to one, with 69% saying the economy is weaker. That’s still better than a few weeks ago when 80% of Canadians saw the economy weakening with only 7% expecting it to strengthen.
  • Fewer Canadians -- at 37.1% last week -- are reporting that their personal finances have deteriorated. While still above average, that number had reached 42.3% in April.
  • Job security is returning to more normal levels. The share of respondents who said they are at least somewhat secure in their job hit 63.8%, within striking distance of pre-crisis averages of about 66%.
  • Canadians remain sour on real estate, even though here too there has been some improvement in sentiment over the past two weeks. About 45% anticipate a drop in home prices in the next six months, which is three times historical averages.

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