Consumer Confidence Survey (CCS) India

RBI’s survey shows rise in consumer optimism for the second consecutive time in its March 2019 round.

Note: Consumer confidence survey was published quarterly by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) before March 2016.

Published bi-monthly by the RBI. Updated to the month of March 2019 (published on April 4, 2019)

Recent Data Trend

In the March 2019 round of Consumer Confidence Survey, the households’ sentiment for the second consecutive quarter towards the current period (as measured by consumer confidence index) improved from 96.7% to 104.6%. The index value saw an increase to above 100 for the first time since June 2017 round, which depicts that people are turning more optimist given the fresh elections are around the corner. The households’ optimism regarding the economic conditions in the future as measured by the future expectations index (FEI) also improved to 133.4 in March from 128.9 in December.

On the employment front, which had been a major concern for a while for the households since November 2016 round, a higher proportion of respondents (41.1%) in the March round indicated employment scenario to have improved for both the current period and expectations for the year ahead.

The households’ expectations of inflation in the March 2019 round eased with 77.8% agreeing that price situation during the last one year has improved. Respondents also expect an improvement in the next one year in terms of price situation. A gradual improvement in the households' sentiment (25%) on income level was seen, with 25% of the respondents saying their income was higher on a YoY basis in the March round.

Overall, the consumers expect an improvement in their economic conditions in the near future. This sentiment has turned optimistic for the first time since the last two years, giving some relief for the government that needs to win over people to secure power for another five years. Although such an improvement in consumer sentiment is contrary to growing concerns over slowdown in consumption since the last two quarters.

Brief Overview

Consumer confidence survey (CCS) has been conducted by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on a quarterly basis since June 2010 and on a bi-monthly basis since March 2016. The survey obtains information on urban consumer sentiments and captures qualitative responses on questions pertaining to economic conditions, household circumstances, income, spending, prices, etc. For each round of the survey, approx 5400 respondents (aged 21 years and above) are canvassed in six metropolitan cities of Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Kolkata, and Mumbai. The responses are mostly in two parts- current situation as compared to a year ago and expectations a year ahead. Expectations on prices and consumer spending are in three forms: increased, remained the same and decreased or positive, neutral and negative.

To combine the consumer confidence responses on various parameters, two sub-indices are calculated by the RBI: Current Situation Index (CSI) that reflects the current situation as compared to one year ago and Future Expectation Index (FEI) that reflects expectations one year ahead. CSI and FEI are compiled on the basis of net responses on the economic situation, income, spending, employment and the price level for the current period and a year ahead, respectively. CSI/FEI = 100 + Average of Net Responses of the above parameters. CSI and FEI are compiled on the basis of net responses on the economic situation, income, spending, employment and the price level for the current period and a year ahead, respectively. CSI/FEI = 100 + Average of Net Responses of the above parameters. The CSI and the FEI can take values between 0 and 200. An index value over 100 implies that consumers are optimistic about the current/future situation and vice versa.

The responses to the main variables of the survey, viz, income, spending, employment, etc are recorded in terms of percentage. Percentage responses on income and spending are the respondents' own view, i.e, personal income and personal spending.

For more information, please visit the official government website.

Next Release Date:  June 7, 2019