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UBS Consumption Indicator: Car buyers step on the gas

Zurich/Basel Media Releases Switzerland

The UBS Consumption Indicator rose from 1.62 to 1.68 points in June, its third monthly increase in a row. Despite the retail sector's slightly more pessimistic mood, the rising number of new car registrations signals solid growth in private consumption.

Zurich/Basel, 29 July 2015 – The minor improvement in the prospects for Swiss private consumption in June stems mainly from an increase in the number of new car registrations. It rose by around a fifth, both year on year and month on month. Car buyers tend to prefer powerful cars; the average horsepower output of a new car in Switzerland is 25% higher than in Europe.

This sharp increase in registrations contrasts starkly with the gloomy outlook for business activities in the retail sector. Real revenues have fallen 1.6% year on year since the start of 2015, and the effects are still being felt. The index published by the Swiss Economic Institute KOF at ETH Zurich fell month on month from -10 to -13 points, reflecting the gloomy expectations in retail.

Sources: Seco, UBS

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