Are we breaking the record?
Information about record-breaking stock prices is coming in from all over the world. Also WIG, the total return index of the Polish stock exchange, was closing on a record high in January this year. So what does the TNS Consumer Index tell us? The current measurement indicates a 6.4 growth, which is still 13.7 short of the record value from April 2008. If we consider only the current growth trend that has started in Autumn of 2013, then the highest Index levels could be observed in October last year (7.2). The economic forecasts are rather optimistic, though is this going to be enough for the TNS Consumer Index to break historical records – we will have to wait and see.
Whose moods improved the most?
Moods of all the groups improved as the TNS Consumer Index has been on a growth trend over the last 4 years. However, not all of them improved to the same extent. Groups that noted particular increases included: older consumers (55+) – with a historical maximum in September 2017 (at 8.1), consumers with a lower level of education (historical maximum in August 2017 for consumers with elementary education – 16.0), and consumers from rural areas (historical maximum in December 2017 – 12.8). The groups that were the least affected by the improved situation are consumers from big cities (2.6 in the January measurement, with a historical record in April 2008 – at 23.6), better-educated consumers ("only” 20.0 vs. the record-breaking 34.0 in April 2008), and younger Poles (up to the age of 39). The current reading for the 25 to 39 age group (4.9) can be considered low as compared with the impressive 38.5 in April 2008.
In the period when the Index was as its highest - in 2007/ 2008 – consumer moods remained strongly polarised: well-educated consumers from big cities were enthusiastic, whereas older and less educated people were at the opposite end of the spectrum, with the TNS Consumer Index dipping into the negative value range. At present the demographic variation is no longer so substantial, with all social groups presenting as happy, but not really euphoric.