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GEORGIAN CONSUMER CONFIDENCE REBOUNDS IN DECEMBER 2019
29 December 2019
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A nationally representative sample of around 350 Georgians, interviewed in early October, November and December 2019, reveals that the Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) deteriorated in the two consecutive months, October and November, by 0.4 (from -19.3 in September to -19.7 in October) and 2.1 index points (from -19.7 in October to -21.8 in November) respectively. Yet, CCI showed an improvement of 1.8 index points in December (from -21.8 in November to -20 in December). A similar pattern is observed in both sub-indices, the Present Situation Index and the Expectations Index, over recent months, with an exception that in November the Present Situation Index improved by 0.5 index points, compared to October, from -23.6 in October to -23.1 in November.


Table 1: CCI and sub-indices in October, November and December 2019

  CCI Present situation index Expectations index
October -19.7 -23.6 -15.7
November -21.8 -23.1 -20.4
December -20.0 -22.6 -17.3

It is worth mentioning which particular issues drove CCI down in October and November and which ones improved CCI in December. In October, questions concerning expected changes in major purchases, the current ability to save, and past inflation caused the decline in CCI. Afterwards, in November, Georgian consumers were not positive about the expected general economic situation in the country, the expected change in their personal financial position, expected unemployment, expected inflation, and the change in personal financial position over the previous 12 months, which caused the drop in CCI by 2.1 index points. Lastly, in December, as mentioned above, CCI experienced an increase of 1.8 index points and it was due to an improvement in expected change in personal financial position, expected change in major purchases and change in personal financial position over the past 12 months.

Below we present Table 2 summarizing changes in CCI, and later in Tables 3 and 4 we present recent changes in the consumer confidence disaggregated by sub-indices, the Present Situation Index and the Expectations Index, by groups.


Table 2: Changes in Consumer Confidence Index (Index points) in October, November and December, by Group

  October/September November/October December/November
CCI -0.4

-2.1

1.8

Tbilisi -1.2

-2.6

1.5

Rest-of-Georgia 0.2

-1.7

1.9

Higher Education -1.6

-3.2

0.2

Without higher education -1.1

0.4

4.6

Male -4.8

-0.9

1.7

Female 4.2

-3.0

1.9

“Young” 3.2

-2.2

-9.1

“Old” -0.1

-1.8

7.2

Table 2 highlights which particular groups experienced negative changes in October and November and which groups showed improvement in December. Accordingly, numbers tell us that October turned out to be more negative in terms of the Consumer Confidence Index for “Old” male highly educated Georgian consumers from Tbilisi. Afterwards, November was disappointing, again concerning Consumer Confidence, for “Young” female highly educated Georgians from Tbilisi. And finally, in December, as Consumer Confidence exhibited positive change, particularly, the following group was affected positively – “Old” female non-highly educated Georgians from Rest of Georgia.


Table 3:
Changes in Present Situation Index (Index points) in October, November and December, by Group

  October/September November/October December/November
Present Situation Index

-0.1

0.5

0.5

Tbilisi

-1.1

1.8

-3.0

Rest-of-Georgia

0.2

-2.2

5.0

Higher Education

-2.6

-0.5

-2.4

Without higher education

-1.0

3.4

5.6

Male

-7.8

1.9

-0.8

Female

8.1

-0.6

1.6

“Young”

0.8

0.7

-12.3

“Old”

3.4

0.7

6.9

When looking at the changes in sub-indices, Present Situation Index and Expectations Index, in Tables 3 and 4, we can notice that overall changes in Consumer Confidence Index are driven mainly by expectations. Similarly, we can identify which groups are not optimistic when it comes to expectations, in October and November. Consequently, “Old” male non-highly educated Georgians from Tbilisi, in October and “Young” highly educated female Georgians from Tbilisi, in November, seem to drive down CCI, while “Old” male non-highly educated Georgian consumers from Tbilisi seem to be more optimistic in December, triggering overall progress in Consumer Confidence. Table 4 presents above-mentioned statements.


Table 4: Changes in Expectations Index (Index points) in October, November and December, by Group

  October/September November/October December/November
Expectations Index

-0.6

-4.7

3.1

Tbilisi

-1.4

-7.1

6.1

Rest-of-Georgia

0.2

-1.2

-1.2

Higher Education

-0.5

-5.8

2.8

Without higher education

-1.1

-2.6

3.6

Male

-1.8

-3.8

4.2

Female

0.4

-5.4

2.1

“Young”

5.6

-5.1

-5.9

“Old”

-3.6

-4.3

7.6

Table 5 illustrates various changes in December concerning expectations. Although overall expectations improved Consumer Confidence in December, we have not observed positive change for all the groups regarding expectations. Accordingly, we noticed that the groups, “Rest of Georgia” and “Young” are not positive about expectations of any kind (expected general economic situation, expected change in personal financial situation, expected ability to save etc.); improvements being reported only for expected ability to save and expected change in major purchases for the Georgians living outside the capital.  The rest of the groups exhibited positive patterns concerning expectations to make major purchases, the country’s general economic situation over the next year, their personal financial situation over the next year, expected level of unemployment and inflation. The data also shows that several groups that showed positive change for other categories of expectations, are not optimistic towards their ability to save in the next year. These are male Georgians from Tbilisi, who are highly educated. All the numbers confirming above-mentioned statements are presented below in Table 5.


Table 5: December 2019, Changes in Consumer Confidence (Index Points), by Question (in expectations) and by Group

  Tbilisi Rest of Georgia Higher Education Without higher education Male Female Young Old
General economic situation, next 12 months

11.1

-6.1

6.3

0.0

7.8

0.7

-3.6

7.9

Do you expect prices to increase more rapidly, next 12 months?

10.0

-8.6

7.1

-5.9

3.6

1.3

-1.4

4.3

How will your financial situation change, next 12 months

8.5

-1.3

2.4

8.0

4.7

4.0

-7.2

10.0

Do you expect to increase spending on major purchases compared to the past, next 12 months

8.1

0.4

4.5

5.8

7.4

2.8

-4.6

9.6

Expected level of unemployment in Georgia, next 12 months

7.3

-1.3

4.8

2.4

4.1

3.6

-8.7

10.4

Your ability to save, next 12 months

-8.7

9.8

-8.0

11.3

-2.7

0.2

-10.1

3.3



MONTHLY AND YEARLY CHANGES IN THE CCI VARIABLES



BAR CHARTS: CONSUMER RESPONSES BY QUESTIONS
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