Consumers holding back from big purchases on fears of tough budget
CONSUMERS are holding back from making major purchases because they fear another tough budget, a new survey has found.
Households are reluctant to spend on fridges and cars because they do not know how many more tax hikes and charges they face.
Concerns about property tax are also forcing householders to keep a tight rein on spending.
These fears mean there was a marginal decline in the Consumer Confidence Index in April when compared with the previous month.
The overall KBC Ireland/ESRI Consumer Sentiment Index decreased from 60.0 in March to 58.9 in April.
The three-month moving average fell from 61.2 to 59.4, reflecting a slight weakening of sentiment since the start of the year.
Austin Hughes, KBC Bank Ireland, said the mood of consumers was little changed in April.
“The marginal decline in the sentiment index is disappointing when compared to a slight improvement across the rest of the euro area but it is not entirely surprising.
“The April survey period saw some downbeat reports on the Irish economy and a number of indicators that point towards a still hesitant recovery,” he added.