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Finder Consumer Positivity Index

Tracking how Australian consumers feel about the economy and their financial lives.

What you need to know

  • Finder's positivity index declined 6.4% in November to 96.3 points.
  • A drop in savings was the main contributor to the decline in the index.
  • The drop follows a cash rate increase in November.

The drop in the index has coincided with the RBA raising the cash rate by 25 bps to 4.35%.

The savings category was the main drag on the index. This was driven by a 12% drop in how much people had in savings, and a 10% drop in how much they were saving each month.

This likely indicates consumers having to dip into savings to pay higher mortgage costs and rising consumer prices.

The second largest contributor to the index's decline was people's general economic sentiment. In this category the number of people with a positive sentiment about their ability to afford a home dropped a whopping 10% and their positivity about their household's debt dropped by 9%.

The proportion with positive sentiment around their continued employment also decreased by 6%.

Positive sentiment also decreased sharply in the housing category. The number of individuals reporting 'now is a good time to buy property' dropped by 16%.

What is the Finder Positivity Index?

Finder's Positivity Index is a monthly measure of Australian consumer sentiment, and a useful way to gauge the financial health of Australian consumers at a glance. It provides a snapshot of how Australians feel about their current capacity to earn a decent income; to spend enough to maintain their standard of living; and to save for the future. The index also provides an insight into where the economy as a whole is going in the short term.

The index is collated from over 50,000 responses to Finder's Consumer Sentiment Tracker since May 2019. It is produced by analysing data collected across five broad categories:

  1. General economic sentiment (65%)
  2. Housing (15%)
  3. Savings (10%)
  4. Credit card usage (5%)
  5. Shopping behaviour (5%)

Each category is measured with survey responses on how Australians feel about a recession; their wages; wellbeing; their ability to pay for housing; their living costs; use of buy now pay later; and how much they save per month. The final index is a synthesis of these consumer perspectives into a single index to express current and near-term consumer sentiment. This synthesis involves creating separate indexes for each data point with a baseline of 50, then calculating a weighted sum as a final index.

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