Log In

Reset Password

Consumer confidence falls as people worry about affording retirement costs – survey

First Prev 1 2 3 4 Next Last
Narrative Research Bermuda

Consumer confidence in the economy has slumped to its second-lowest level in the past five years, according to a new survey.

That financial uncertainty has fuelled people’s fears about being able to afford retirement costs, health insurance and healthy food, according to the Narrative Research Bermuda poll.

Consumer confidence now stands at 69.1 per cent, close to the lowest figure recorded in recent years — 66 per cent, which was registered during the first wave of the Covid-19 pandemic in June 2020.

The latest figure, down from 69.8 per cent last September, marks a dramatic drop from the 96.9 per cent level of confidence found in June 2018.

Narrative Research Bermuda

The findings form part of three bad news reports on Bermuda’s economy in a matter of days.

The triple blow also saw Narrative Research Bermuda release findings that 71 per cent of people are going without or buying less owing to the cost-of-living crisis.

A Chamber of Commerce study this week also reported that inflation and staffing challenges have put additional strain on Bermuda’s businesses.

The gloomy outlook is causing people to worry about paying for essentials, with 42 per cent concerned about being able to afford health insurance as cost-of-living rises bite — a climb of two points since June last year.

Also, 54 per cent of residents expressed concern about whether they have enough money to buy healthy food, a six-point jump during the same time period.

The most mentioned cause of financial concern was saving for retirement, which 60 per cent said they were fearful about, a rise from 54 per cent last summer.

Nearly one third, 31 per cent, voiced fears about being able to pay their electricity bills, although that is a drop of two points.

Margaret Chapman, of Narrative Research (Photograph Supplied)

More than a quarter of people — 26 per cent — said education costs and the general cost of providing for children were a concern, down by one point.

While one in three people said not having the ability to support a family member was a worry, up from 27 per cent.

For nearly one in five, or 19 per cent, being able to pay telecommunications bills was concerning, an increase of five points.

The number of people with no financial concerns halved from 12 per cent to 6 per cent.

The report on consumer confidence stated: “With recent rising prices and inflation, it is unsurprising that Bermuda’s consumer confidence level has continued to decline.”

The report said the index measured “consumer attitudes with regards to the perceived state of Bermuda’s economy, residents’ household economic situation, and conditions for major purchases”.

Women’s confidence levels have declined more than those of men to stand at 65.2 per cent, down 15.2 points.

Men’s confidence is at 73.5 per cent, down 3.2 points.

Residents aged 18 to 34 have the highest confidence level across age groups, standing at 86.4 per cent, down 4.2 points.

While 35 to 54-year-olds registered a 63.5 per cent confidence level, down 11.3 points, and the figure for people aged over 55 was 64.4 per cent, a drop of 12.4 points.

White residents, at 57.7 per cent, have a much lower confidence rating than Black residents, who recorded a 74 per cent rating.

Narrative Research Bermuda

People in Warwick and Paget experienced the biggest drop in confidence, down 15.4 points to 63 per cent.

Sandys/Southampton’s confidence rating was 70.7 per cent, down 9.4 per cent, the Pembroke and Devonshire figure stands at 75 per cent, down 5.2 per cent and confidence in Hamilton, Smiths and St George’s was down 12.3 per cent to 66.3 per cent.

Walter Roban, the Deputy Premier, denied that the survey showing 71 per cent were going without or buying less was a mark of failure for the Government.

He told a news conference yesterday: “I disagree. We understand that there are people who are not feeling the progress that has been made over the past year around economic recovery.

“There is more work to be done. But, at the same time, data shows that there are areas that have improved, so there has been improvement.

“But we have to work on ensuring that average persons are feeling much more the progress that the whole Government and others are working to achieve.”

The consumer confidence telephone survey questioned 400 adult residents of Bermuda between November 21 and December 4 last year, and has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 per cent.

The financial concerns online poll saw 219 people take part between November 21 and December 6 last year.

The questions were posed by Narrative Research Bermuda and not commissioned by an outside party.

You must be Registered or to post comment or to vote.

Published January 13, 2023 at 8:07 am (Updated January 13, 2023 at 8:07 am)

Consumer confidence falls as people worry about affording retirement costs – survey

What you
Need to
1. For a smooth experience with our commenting system we recommend that you use Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Firefox or Chrome Browsers. Additionally please clear both your browser's cache and cookies - How do I clear my cache and cookies?
2. Please respect the use of this community forum and its users.
3. Any poster that insults, threatens or verbally abuses another member, uses defamatory language, or deliberately disrupts discussions will be banned.
4. Users who violate the Terms of Service or any commenting rules will be banned.
5. Please stay on topic. "Trolling" to incite emotional responses and disrupt conversations will be deleted.
6. To understand further what is and isn't allowed and the actions we may take, please read our Terms of Service
7. To report breaches of the Terms of Service use the flag icon