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Published: 27 December 2017

Consumer confidence remained steady to the end of the year

The consumer confidence indicator stood at 24.0 in December whereas in November it was 23.0 and in October 23.1. Last year in December, the consumer confidence indicator received the value 19.5. This year’s average for the indicator was record high, 22.9. The long-term average for 1995 to 2017 is 12.2. The data are based on Statistics Finland’s Consumer Survey, for which 1,185 people resident in Finland were interviewed between 1 and 15 December.

Consumer confidence indicator (CCI)

Consumer confidence indicator (CCI)

Of the four components of the consumer confidence indicator expectations of consumers’ own and Finland’s economy and of household’s saving possibilities improved slightly in December from November. In turn, estimates of the development of unemployment weakened a bit. Compared with the corresponding period last year, all the components of the indicator apart from saving possibilities improved clearly.

In December, consumers’ expectations concerning Finland's economy and unemployment were very bright. Consumers’ assessments about their own economic situation and saving possibilities were also good.

In December, consumers regarded the time very favourable for taking out a loan and for saving. Buying of durable goods was also considered worthwhile. Employed consumers felt in December that their personal threat of unemployment has decreased much in recent months.

Consumers' own and Finland's economy

In December, 51 per cent of consumers believed that Finland’s economic situation would improve during the next 12 months, while only eight per cent of them thought that the country’s economy would deteriorate. In November, the corresponding proportions were 47 and 8 per cent, and in December last year 45 and 15 per cent.

In all, 30 per cent of consumers believed in December that their own economy would improve and 11 per cent of them feared it would worsen over the year. One month earlier, the corresponding proportions were 28 and 11 per cent, and one year earlier 27 and 13 per cent.

Consumers' expectations concerning their own and Finland's economy in 12 months' time

Consumers' expectations concerning their own and Finland's economy in 12 months' time

Unemployment and inflation

Altogether 47 per cent of consumers thought in December that unemployment would decrease over the year, while 16 per cent of them believed it would increase. The shares were 48 and 16 per cent in November and 37 and 23 per cent one year ago.

Twenty per cent of employed persons reckoned in December that their personal threat of unemployment had lessened over the past few months, while 13 per cent thought it had grown. Thirty-one per cent of employed persons felt that they were not threatened by unemployment at all.

Consumers predicted in December that consumer prices would go up by 1.6 per cent over the next 12 months. The predicted long-term average inflation rate is 2.2 per cent.

Buying of durable goods

In December, 46 per cent of consumers thought that the time was favourable for buying durable goods. General intentions to spend money were picking up slightly. Nineteen per cent of households were either very or fairly certain to buy a car during the next 12 months. Seven per cent of households considered purchasing a dwelling. In December, 18 per cent of households were planning to spend money on renovating their dwelling within a year.

Saving and taking out a loan

In December, 68 per cent of consumers considered the time favourable for saving. Twelve months ago the respective proportion was 53 per cent. In December, 67 per cent of households had been able to lay aside some money and 80 per cent believed they would be able to do so during the next 12 months.

In December, 76 per cent of consumers regarded the time favourable for raising a loan. The long-term average proportion is 62 per cent. This December, 13 per cent of households were thinking of taking out a loan within one year.

Consumer confidence by major region and population group

In December, consumers' confidence in the economy was strongest in Greater Helsinki and weakest in Northern Finland. Among population groups, upper-level salaried employees and entrepreneurs were clearly most optimistic. Pensioners had the gloomiest expectations concerning economic development.

Prevalence of modern equipment in households in November

In November, as many as 85 per cent of households with persons aged 15 to 84 had a home computer and 90 per cent had an Internet connection at their disposal. Fifty-seven per cent of households owned a tablet. Eighty-two per cent of households owned at least one smartphone and 20 per cent some type of wearable technology like an activity tracker, smartwatch or smartglasses.

Thirty-three per cent of households were watching a smart TV in November. Twenty-eight per cent of households had a gaming console and some even a remote controlled camera drone. Seventy-eight per cent of households owned a car in November. More information about the prevalence of equipment can be found in Appendix figures 12 to 15 and in the database table 003.

Consumers' views of the economy

  Average 10/1995- Max. 10/1995- Min. 10/1995- 12/2016 11/2017 12/2017 Outlook
A1 Consumer confidence indicator, CCI = (B2+B4+B7+D2)/4 12.2 24.1 -6.5 19.5 23.0 24.0 ++
B2 Own economy in 12 months' time (balance) 8.3 14.1 2.3 8.4 9.8 10.9 +
B4 Finland's economy in 12 months' time (balance) 4.0 25.3 -27.1 14.9 19.7 21.7 ++
B6 Inflation in 12 months' time (per cent) 2.2 4.6 0.6 1.6 1.7 1.6  
B7 Unemployment in Finland in 12 months' time (balance) -3.2 27.6 -51.1 6.3 16.3 15.4 ++
B8 Own threat of unemployment now (balance) -1.0 7.6 -18.8 -0.8 3.7 5.1 +
C1 Favourability of time for purchasing durables (balance) 18.5 41.8 -14.2 21.1 26.6 25.7 +
C2 Favourability of time for saving (balance) 10.6 36.8 -19.6 4.0 19.8 23.1 ++
C3 Favourability of time for raising a loan (balance) 18.1 42.0 -47.1 27.7 36.1 35.8 ++
D2 Household's saving possibilities in the next 12 months (balance) 39.8 52.2 10.9 48.5 46.5 47.9 +

The balance figures are obtained by deducting the weighted proportion of negative answers from that of positive answers. The consumer confidence indicator (CCI) is the average of the balance figures for the CCI components. The balance figures and the confidence indicator can range between -100 and +100 – the higher (positive) balance figure, the brighter the view on the economy.

Explanations for Outlook column: ++ Outlook is very good, + Outlook is good, = Outlook is neutral, - Outlook is poor, -- Outlook is very poor. Deviation of balance from average has been compared to standard deviation.

EU results

The (seasonally adjusted) Consumer Survey results for all EU countries are released on the European Commission website: European Commission, DG ECFIN, Business and Consumer Survey Results .

Source: Consumer Survey 2017, December. Statistics Finland

Inquiries: Pertti Kangassalo 029 551 3598,

Director in charge: Jari Tarkoma

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Appendix tables


Updated 27.12.2017

Referencing instructions:

Official Statistics of Finland (OSF): Consumer Confidence [e-publication].
ISSN=2669-8889. December 2017. Helsinki: Statistics Finland [referred: 4.12.2023].
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