The German Retail Association (HDE) announced encouraging news for local retailers on Monday. According to the findings of the industry organization, consumer sentiment improved again in March.
The HDE consumption barometer, which is based on a survey of 1,600 people on consumption-related topics, has risen for the fifth month in a row, the association said. The “sustained recovery in consumer sentiment” could now even be “a first step towards slight macroeconomic improvements in the coming months”.
According to the HDE, a significant part of the upward trend was due to the fact that those surveyed again assessed the overall economic development more positively. Overall, the economic expectations are “characterized by confidence and are improving compared to the previous month, although they have not yet fully recovered from the cloudiness that arose during the course of the war a year ago,” the association explained.
HDE sees “readiness for higher consumption”
The increasing optimism about the overall economy was accompanied by higher expectations for personal income development. The consumers surveyed expect to have more money at their disposal.
As a result, the propensity to buy also increased compared to February. The market researchers explained that the “willingness to consume more” continues to increase. “At the end of last year they were trying harder to keep the money together.” However, the growing mood to buy does not mean that those surveyed are completely hiding all potential risks. According to the HDE, the propensity to save also increased somewhat in March.
In view of the information available, the industry organization now even hopes that private consumption could have a positive effect on overall economic development in Germany in the coming months. At the same time, however, the association warned of continued risks: “Whether this will happen also depends on further inflation and thus consumer purchasing power,” it said in a statement.