Consumer sentiment in Russia down for 2nd month in a row – MNI Indicators

By Andrei Skvarsky.

Consumer sentiment in Russia edged down for the second consecutive month in January after rising a little in November, according to monthly polls by a Deutsche Boerse affiliate.

January’s survey by the MNI Indicators intelligence company showed a little more optimism in some respects than December’s poll had done, but by and large consumer sentiment was down month-on-month, and though the decline was small, it brought sentiment to the lowest point since March 2015, the firm said in a statement.

Respondents in January’s poll said they were slightly better off financially, had lower inflation expectations and were a little more upbeat about overall business conditions in Russia for the next year.

They were also somewhat more prepared to buy big-ticket items, though they had “dialled down their appetite for car buying to a record low”, the London-headquartered company said.

But their expectations of their personal finances in a year’s time had dropped 12.1% month-on-month in terms of MNI Indicators’ metrics.

Respondents also had gloomier feelings about overall business conditions in the country in five years’ time.

“Positive takeaways are that sentiment has been relatively flat recently and looks to have plateaued, albeit at a low level. Moreover, we saw a welcome pull-back in inflation expectations in January. Still, it’s difficult to put a gloss on a report which shows confidence at such a low level with a number of key metrics in the report at record lows,” the statement quoted MNI Indicators chief economist Philip Uglow as saying.

The MNI Russia Consumer Sentiment Survey, a project launched by the company in March 2013, involves monthly polls – telephone interviews, with each interviewee selected randomly by a computer. At least 1,000 interviews are conducted across the country each month.

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