Hope ris­ing for con­sumers

Townsville Bulletin - - NEWS -

CON­SUMER sen­ti­ment has risen de­spite banks in­creas­ing rates on in­ter­est- only mort­gages, but pes­simism still rules. The lat­est West­pacMel­bourne In­sti­tute In­dex of con­sumer sen­ti­ment has risen 0.4 per cent to 96.6 in July, com­pared to 96.2 in June. West­pac’s chief econ­o­mist Bill Evans said it was the eighth con­sec­u­tive month for the in­dex to print be­low 100, which means the pes­simists out­num­ber the op­ti­mists. How­ever, he said the lift in the in­dex was a good sign. “De­vel­op­ments around in­ter­est rates dur­ing the month could have been much more dam­ag­ing for con­fi­dence than what turned out to be the case,” Mr Evans said. He said con­fi­dence among sur­vey par­tic­i­pants with mort­gages ac­tu­ally rose 4.8 per cent.

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