Sat, Nov 29, 2008 - Page 12 News List

Confidence index falls to eight-year low

By Jerry Lin  /  STAFF REPORTER

The consumer confidence index (CCI) fell to its lowest level in nearly eight years this month, with the sub-index on the outlook for job opportunities in the next six months seeing the largest decline, a survey showed yesterday.

The CCI fell to 50 points this month, down by 2.22 points from a month earlier, the seventh straight month of decline since May, the survey by National Central University found.

A score below 100 indicates pessimism, while one between 100 and 200 indicates optimism.

Among the six sub-indexes, the outlook for job opportunities in the next six months dropped by 10.1 points from last month to 54.8 this month, indicating the public’s mounting concerns about job losses.

The results echoed those of the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics’ (DGBAS) on Monday that unemployment was worsening, after the jobless rate climbed to a five-year high of 4.37 percent last month, with an estimated 476,000 people out of work.

The confidence report also showed consumers were hesitant to buy durables such as houses or cars.

On Thursday, a government survey showed confidence in property prices hit a record low in the third quarter.

Consumers were also less optimistic about stock investments and economic outlook over the next six months.

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