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News, Trends, Articles and Reports

March 2016



Nielsen - Global Consumer Confidence Report Q4 2015Nielsen: Global Consumer Confidence Report Q4 2015

Global consumer confidence ended 2015 on a subdued note as the index declined two points from the third quarter to 97—the same score as the start of the year. Compared to Q1 2015, confidence in the fourth quarter remained flat in Asia-Pacific at 107, while Europe edged up four points to 81. All other regions ended the year less confident than they started, with the North America and Middle East/Africa regions declining six points each to 100 and 90, respectively, and Latin America declining three points to 83. Europe was the only region to show consistent confidence improvements throughout the year across all three indicators. Download the report here


Global Economies and the Impact of Currency FluctuationsGlobal Economies and the Impact of Currency Fluctuations  – Introduction 

Currency fluctuations are a natural outcome of the floating exchange rate system that is the norm for most major economies. The exchange rate of currencies is influenced by a combination of factors, including supply and demand, economic performance, outlook for inflation, interest rate differentials, capital flows and others. Read the full article here


Canadian Consumers More and More Prefer to Shop OnlineCanadian Consumers More and More Prefer to Shop Online

Online shopping was the winner this holiday retail season, according to a report that says many traditional retailers will have to up their game in order to prevent Amazon and eBay from siphoning away sales in the future.

“E-commerce is becoming a more preferred shopping channel among Canadians as these digital platforms offer comfort and convenience for shoppers,” said BMO Capital Markets analyst Peter Sklar, who compared share of Canadian Web visits during the holidays between online-only retailers and bricks-and-mortar retailers with online divisions, such as Canadian Tire and Walmart. Read the full article here


Russian FlagRussia: a Market to Reckon With

Internet penetration has been growing rapidly in Russia during the past few years.  According to a recent GfK study, Internet penetration exceeded 70%, with 84 million users aged 16 or more across the country, compared to under 40% just five years back. With over 70 million people using Internet monthly, Russia has the biggest online audience in Europe. Up to 2015 the online market grew 25% annually.  Research agency Data Insight reports that in 2015 160 million small packages and parcels sent to online shoppers in 2015, up 10% from the previous year. Russia’s domestic online retail market grew in real terms. It also grew in Rubles, reaching some 650 billion (+16%). Read the full article here


Consumer Spending Expected to Recover This YearConsumer Spending Expected to Recover This Year

Global consumer expenditure growth is expected to accelerate to 3.0% year-on-year in real terms in 2016 from 2.3% in 2015, largely on account of recovery in key emerging markets. Yet, compared to the period prior to 2015, emerging and developing economies are entering an era of slow growth. Real consumer expenditure in developed countries is forecast to grow by 2.3% year-on-year in 2016, marginally up from the 2.2% recorded in 2015. Consumer spending growth in emerging and developing economies is set to pick up to 4.4% in 2016, from 2.5% in 2015. This recovery in consumption will be in tandem with the projected improvement in economic conditions in Russia and Latin America, Africa and the Middle East and Asia. Read the full article here


US Study - Five Strategies to Bridge the Mobile-to-Store GapUS Study: Five Strategies to Bridge the Mobile-to-Store Gap

Recent studies by RetailMeNot Inc show that 73% of consumers begin their shopping journey on a smartphone. Whether that’s to check product reviews, search for similar recommendations or look up a better price, customers are influenced in myriad ways, making their journey highly unpredictable. Yet, 90% of sales still happen in the store.  As a result, devising the perfect cross-channel experience for today’s consumer is no simple task. Mail us to get your copy.


African Consumer and Retail - The Key Growth DriversAfrican Consumer and Retail: the Key Growth Drivers

Africa is home to more than one billion people, presenting a massive potential consumer market. Moreover, population growth remains rapid: according to the United Nations the continent’s population will surpass the 1.5 billion mark by 2026 and the two billion mark 15 years later. The population of today – estimated at around one billion – in the SSA region covers 84% of the total population of Africa. In addition, Africans are increasingly moving to cities, making it easier for companies to target certain consumer groups. Although the demographic make-up of the continent is extremely favourable, success is not guaranteed.  Read the full article here 


Global Economies and the Impact of Currency Fluctuations - Part OneGlobal Economies and the Impact of Currency Fluctuations – Part One

As the U.S. economy recovers, the dollar has strengthened, making it one of the best performers over the last year. As explained in our earlier introduction with respect on this issue, currency fluctuations have a huge impact on the economic and social welfare of companies and consumers as global economies are closely connected.

The following explains how other advanced and emerging economies and currencies are faring and their outlook for 2016. Read the full article here