Panamanian Consumer: Confidence Improves at a Slow Pace

During March 2021, the Panamanian Consumer Confidence Index increased 2% with respect to the level reported in January of this year, this slight increase is reported in the context of the economic reactivation process of local production.

Friday, April 9, 2021

According to the survey conducted by the Chamber of Commerce, Industries and Agriculture of Panama (CCIAP), in strategic alliance with The Marketing Group, expectations on the probability of saving money decreased 3 percentage points, presenting a result of 75 points, below the equilibrium point, for the measurement of March 2021, so it remains at levels of marked distrust.

See "How do Purchasing Intentions Evolve?"

"The perception of unemployment marks a 96 percentage point index. This indicator still remains within the levels of distrust, although with a slight improvement, of one percentage point, uncertainty still persists in this indicator", informed the CCIAP.

The report states that "... consumers' expectations about the economic situation of their households went from 112 points (January) to 116 points (March), showing a 4 percentage point increase. This result indicates that consumers have expectations that in the short term their household situation will improve.

The indicator on the outlook for the general economic situation of the country for the next 12 months increased by 7 percentage points, from 107 (January) to 114 points (March).  These results remain at a level of mildly positive confidence.
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More on this topic

Business, Mistrust and Uncertainty

January 2021

Although the restrictions imposed by the pandemic have been relaxed, consumers continue to show signs of mistrust in the current situation, behavior that could put pressure downward on spending on products and services considered to be discretionary.

In 2020, when the effects of the pandemic that caused the spread of covid-19 began to become evident, it was anticipated that consumer habits would change, since in a complicated economic scenario full of uncertainty, people would be more careful when spending.

Business Expectation Improves, but Not Enough

November 2019

Between the third and fourth quarters of the year, the Global Expectations Index reported a 6% increase in Costa Rica, but still remains in pessimistic territory.

The expectations index improved in all sectors during the fourth quarter, with the services and manufacturing indexes strengthening the most compared to three months ago.

When Confidence Disappears

September 2019

Business confidence in Costa Rica fell in the third quarter to levels reported in 2009, a year marked by the global financial crisis, and in consumer’s pessimism has also rebounded, because no effective and short-term measures are perceived that tend to reactivate the national economy.

Businessmen are not very optimistic about the development of their businesses in the coming months, as comparing today's Business Confidence Index (IEC) (5.3) with that of a year ago (6.2) shows a significant decline. In addition, this indicator accumulates 10 quarters of gradual slowdown, reported the Costa Rican Union of Chambers and Associations of Private Business Sector (UCCAEP).

Economic Challenges Ahead

February 2019

The pessimism expressed by consumers in Costa Rica and the constant deterioration of business expectations in Guatemala reflect part of the complex challenges faced by Central American economies this year.

A report prepared by the School of Statistics of the University of Costa Rica (UCR) shows the negative trend that come showing the economic expectations, because between February 2018 and the same month of 2019, the Consumer Confidence Index (ICC) fell 15%.

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