SINGAPORE: Consumers in Indonesia are the most optimistic in the world, according to a report from Nielsen, the insights provider.
The company measured consumer confidence and spending intentions among more than 29,000 web users in 58 countries. It found that Asia Pacific was the only region scoring above 100, where figures above and below that baseline indicate degrees of optimism and pessimism respectively.
Indonesia's score of 122 was up by five points on the final quarter of 2012 and far ahead of the region generally, which saw consumer confidence increase two index points to 103 over the same period.
"Indonesian consumers are particularly buoyant due to strong domestic conditions," said Catherine Eddy, Nielsen Indonesia's managing director.
"Historically, there has been a pattern of increased optimism in the lead up to an election in Indonesia," she added, "and with the Presidential election taking place in 2014 we'd expect this confidence will continue."
Other factors fuelling optimism included an increase in the minimum wage and the trend of consumers trading up to premium brands.
"As domestic consumption is the mainstay of GDP in Indonesia this augurs well for growth in the years ahead," observed Eddy.
In all, seven of the top ten most globally confident nations were from Asia Pacific, including India (on 120 points), the Philippines (118 points), Thailand (116 points), China (108 points), Hong Kong (108 points) and Malaysia (106 points).
The remaining three countries in the top ten were Brazil (111 points), the United Arab Emirates (108 points) and Norway (106 points).
"Opportunities to gain new relationships with consumers are abundant as the emerging middle class enters the market at a rapid pace, especially in markets like Indonesia, India, Thailand, Philippines and China," said Therese Glennon, Nielsen's APMEA Region Consumer Insights Leader.
She also noted a divergence in spending patterns, with richer consumers choosing to show off purchasing power in their choice of brands or leisure activities, while reverting to cheaper local options for basic needs.
"Understanding these nuances, which differ greatly from market-to-market, is critical to satisfying the needs of the Asia Pacific consumer and capturing a share of their spending," she added.
Data sourced from Asia Media Journal; additional content by Warc staff