MasterIndex of Retail Forecasts Strong Retail Sales Growth Across Asia/Pacific

Wednesday 28 January 2004 13:53 CET | News

Growth in retail sales across Asia/Pacific is expected to be robust in the first half of 2004, according to the latest MasterIndex of Retail forecast released by MasterCard International.

All 12 Asia/Pacific markets included in the forecast are predicted to see positive expansion, with China maintaining its lead with an anticipated 14.0% year-on-year growth. Conducted twice a year in June and December, the MasterIndex of Retail was launched in June 2003 by MasterCard as part of its knowledge leadership in Asia/Pacific. It is among MasterCards MasterIndex suite of research products, providing six-month forecasts of retail sales growth in 12 markets: Australia, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, New Zealand, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Thailand. In addition to the forecast of Chinas stellar performance, other highlights of the MasterIndex of Retail for the first half of 2004 are as follows: - Thailand takes the number two spot in the retail sales growth predictions with 10.8% year-on-year growth, followed closely by two other South East Asian markets which also show impressive growth prospects: Malaysia (9.2%), Indonesia (8.0%). While not as bullish, the Philippines (5.6%) and Singapore (3.9%) are also indicating positive year-on-year growth prospects. - Korea shows strong recovery, driven by particularly rapid expansion in exports. With domestic consumption starting to recover going into 2004, retail sales growth is predicted to hit 8.2% year-on-year, up from its 2003 year-on-year contraction of 0.7%. - Hong Kong and Taiwan show post-SARS retail recovery forecasts at a healthy year-on-year growth of 6.8% and 5.5% respectively. - Japanese consumers are also reasonably positive; retail sales are anticipated to grow by 4.5% over the previous year. - The Australian and New Zealand retail sectors are both optimistic with anticipated 4.5% and 5.0% year-on-year growth respectively. Combining 10 years of retail sales data , factoring in the secular trend of growth of the retail industry, and using the MasterIndex of Consumer Confidence as an independent variable , an estimate of retail sales value is obtained for the same six-month horizon covered by the MasterIndex of Consumer Confidence. INDIVIDUAL MARKET FORECASTS FOR FIRST HALF 2004 - Retail sales in Australia are expected to grow by 4.5% on the previous year, reaching A$77.0 billion in value in the first six months. Australian consumer confidence saw a significant improvement in the latest MasterIndex of Consumer Confidence survey. The outlook for the first half of 2004 increased from the previous score of 45.3 to 80.9. - Retail sales in China for the first half of 2004 are forecasted to grow by 14.0% year-on-year, valued at 2.45 trillion Yuan. Consumer confidence in China has rebounded (83.7) having fallen off sharply from its previous MasterIndex score of 68.0. Chinese consumers expectations are highly positive, particularly with regard to the economy, quality of life and regular income. - Hong Kongs retail sales for the first half of 2004 are expected to increase by 6.8% year-on-year to reach HK$86.2 billion in value in the first six months. Hong Kong’s MasterIndex of Consumer Confidence score of 81.1 is its second highest on record. Consumer outlook on employment, the economy, and the stock market are particularly optimistic. - Retail sales in Indonesia for the first half of 2004 are expected to manifest year-on-year growth of 8.0% to reach 120.1 trillion Rupiah in the first six months. Consumer confidence in Indonesia has declined from previous optimistic level of 57.5 to the current 49.0. This could possibly be attributed to the rising uncertainty leading up to the presidential election. - The forecasted growth in retail sales for Japan is 4.5% on the previous year, valued at ¥57.1 trillion for the first six months. Japans MasterIndex of Consumer Confidence currently stands at 31.8, showing a marked improvement in consumer conf

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Categories: Payments & Commerce | Payments General
Countries: World
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Payments & Commerce