UBS consumption indicator: Maintains slight momentum
The UBS consumption indicator rose from 1.21 to 1.35 points in March, boosted by an increase in new car registrations. However, a continued decline in retailer sentiment has cast a shadow on the outlook for private consumption.
Zurich/Basel, 29 April 2015 – In March, the registration of new cars climbed 24% compared to the month before when adjusted for seasonal effects. New car registrations in the first quarter were up 6% on last year. The increase is particularly remarkable since the carbon tax on automobile sales increased at the start of the year.
In March, retailer sentiment became even gloomier. The index that assesses the business situation dropped from -3 to -13 points. Retailers have not been this pessimistic since the end of 2011, another period when the franc appreciated significantly. In spite of the strong franc, domestic tourism remains surprisingly healthy. Hotel stays by Swiss residents rose nearly 5% year on year in the first two months of the year.