Consumer Intelligence

Consumer Intelligence

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Tracking survey measures of consumer willingness to spend, determination to build savings, propensity to repay debt and several other indicators.  Leading indicators of consumer spending growth and house prices.


Not all Australians prefer lower interest rates.  Some prefer higher rates and some prefer no change.  This report is based on consumer survey tracking data and shows how interest rate preferences vary over time and by demographic.  It shows that interest rates have lost their power to influence aggregate consumer spending growth in this very low interest rate environment.  It also points to another way to boost consumer spending growth.


In his 2004 book “The Wisdom of Crowds”, James Surowiecki makes an interesting case that if you want to make a correct decision then large numbers of ordinary people can provide better advice than a small number of experts.  We have been researching this concept since 2005 and find that it is a potentially useful technique - but that applying it is rather more complex than suggested by Surowiecki.

We prefer the term "the wisdom of the masses" rather than crowds because the latter does not suggest sufficient diversity.


Provides analysis of nine demand indicators for Australia's mainland states.  Two of these indicators, willingness and ability to spend, are only available from foreseechange.  Also included are composite ranking and a volatility indicator.


Forecasts of Australian retail sales growth over the next two years.  Based on our econometric model and includes a short-term leading indicator model.  Includes analysis of the economic drivers.


House prices are an important economic variable.  They are a major component of household wealth, a significant driver of consumer spending, and a hurdle for prospective first home buyers.  This report is based on a unique leading indicator of Australian house price inflation.


Australia in 2017 contains forecasts, trends, and analysis essential to planning.  Australia enters 2017 with a brighter outlook than had been expected in mid-2016.  The sustainability of this prospect is doubtful.  This report contains unique consumer tracking survey data which provides early warning of change.  Consumer spending growth opportunities are identified.


Young adults have changed their financial priorities and behavious substantially since the global financial crisis and especially since 2010.  This has been bad for many retailers and their suppliers and for other industries such as health insurance.  This report details the changes, why they have occurred, and their implications.


2017 is the year of the perfect storm for Australian retailers.  Consumer spending growth was already weak due to poor employment growth and the lowest hourly wage growth on record.  Now motor fuel and electricity prices are rising again, sucking the discretionary spending power of consumers dry.  It is even worse for households with mortgages as interest rates are creeping up even though the Reserve Bank of Australia has official interest rates on hold.  Later in 2017, Amazon will launch in Australia.  What can Australian consumer marketers do?  It is time to engage a long-ignored demographic.


A set of 25 charts relevant to current and future trends in consumer spending in Australia.  Updated monthly.  Most recent update 28 July 2017.