x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

In a shift to thrift, more Dubai shoppers set sights on future

Confidence among Dubai shoppers slipped slightly in the first quarter, but many remained positive about their personal finances and job prospects.

Confidence among Dubai shoppers slipped slightly in the first quarter, but many remained positive about their personal finances and job prospects.

The consumer confidence index fell to 124 points during the first three months of the year from 125 points in the previous quarter, according to the quarterly consumer confidence index issued by the Dubai Department of Economic Development (DED).

"Consumer confidence is evident from their spending without compromising on the financial stability or goals they have set for the longer term," said Omar Bushahab, the chief executive of the commercial compliance and consumer protection division at the DED.

The index is based on a survey of consumers concerning their perceptions of local job prospects, personal finances and the suitability of making purchases over the coming 12 months.

Many consumers had a positive outlook, the results showed.

Sixty-six per cent said they were optimistic their job situation would improve. Seventy-nine per cent were optimistic about the outlook for personal finances, with 66 per cent feeling it was a good time to buy things they wanted.

In general, people working for the Government were more upbeat about the future than those in the private sector. Consumers were also mainly positive about the economy. Two thirds of those surveyed felt there would be improvements. But political stability in the Arab world and job security were the biggest concerns.

Saving money had become a bigger priority for some. The number who put funds aside rose by 15 per cent in the first quarter of the year compared with the previous quarter to reach 50 per cent. Up to 37 per cent tended to spend their cash reserves on new clothes and outdoor entertainment, the data showed.

In another positive development, the value of exports and re-exports by members of Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry rose by 7.8 per cent in the first quarter to Dh63.5 billion (US$17.28bn) from the same period a year earlier, the chamber said yesterday.

tarnold@thenational.ae

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