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The confidence level of consumers in the economy has witnessed a downward slide amid rising cost of living and prices of basic goods including foodstuffs.
Analysts at Nielsen, a global performance management company that provides a comprehensive understanding of what consumers want to buy, had confirmed earlier that consumer confidence in Nigeria dropped in the fourth quarter of 2015.
The analysts noted that Nigeria’s Consumer Confidence Index for the fourth quarter of 2015 dropped to 100 points from more than 120 points recorded earlier.
The CCI is an indicator designed to measure consumer confidence, which is defined as the degree of optimism in the state of the economy that consumers are expressing through their activities of savings and spending.
The Managing Director, Nielsen West Africa, Mr. Lampe Omoyele, said Nigeria’s CCI was very high before 2015.
Omoyele said, “While Nigeria has always been very high and the highest in Africa, we were concerned when, for the first time in quarter three of 2015, there was a decline in the points.
“So, while it was still over 100, it had declined and this was driven by a number of factors: the inflation and other macroeconomic issues and the oil prices.
“The non-approval of the budget had a lot of impact because wages were static; some were cut. So, consumer disposable income had declined.  While ours was still high in relation to other markets in Africa, the concern for us is that it was declining.”
According to him, Nigerians are generally seen as the happiest people in the world. So, the minute there is a decline in consumer confidence, there is a major problem.
The CCI for 2016 is not expected to go up, going by recent happenings in the country, including the fuel price hike, the persistent insecurity and other macroeconomic factors.
To buttress the findings, the National Bureau of Statistics reported an increase in its April Consumer Price Index, which it said had been rising consecutively since February.

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