The University of Guam Pacific Center for Economic Initiatives has released its report on the sixth Consumer Confidence Survey on Guam. This is the latest in its series of consumer confidence surveys that began in March 2009.
“As a land-grant university, UOG is pleased to provide the results of the latest consumer confidence survey relating to Guam’s economy as a continual engagement outcome for planners and policy decision makers,” said UOG interim senior vice president Anita Borja Enriquez, D.B.A., who also serves as PCEI’s director.
Annette Taijeron Santos, D.B.A., acting dean of the School of Business and Public Administration, considers this report “a great example of UOG’s role in transferring and applying university-based knowledge for practical benefits contributing to the island’s economic prosperity.”
The report is written by Maria Claret Ruane, Ph.D., resident development economist for PCEI and professor of Economics at the School of Business and Public Administration and can be downloaded at the PCEI website at www.uogpcei.org.
Like past surveys, Guam consumers were asked to assess their experience in the past 12 months with the local business conditions, especially in terms of income and employment, as well the regional and global economy. In addition, Guam consumers were asked to look 12 months forward and share their prospects on the same five areas, as well as their plans to purchase big-ticket items and to vacation.
The survey was conducted between Feb. 23 and April 12, 2013. PCEI thanks the 368 respondents who participated in this survey.
Results show that:
* Most survey respondents assessed their economic situation in the past 12 months as neutral (“same as last year’s”). This is noteworthy in light of negative developments affecting tourism and the overall economy around the time of the survey (i.e., Tumon stabbings on Feb. 12, North Korean nuclear threats in April and a strengthening U.S. dollar vs. Japanese Yen since September). Also, a higher percentage of respondents viewed the local business environment more positively than regional or global business environments.
* Respondents are generally optimistic about economic prospects in the next 12 months, responding either in the positive (“better than this year’s”) or neutral (“same as this year’s”). Like in the previous survey, respondents are more upbeat in their economic prospects for Guam in the next 12 months than they are for the region or the world.
* Despite the generally positive economic prospects in the next 12 months, consumers continue to be cautious spenders on big-ticket items, especially with regard to purchases of real estate or vehicles.
* Majority of respondents do not have vacation plans in the next 12 months, although the greatest potential is for trips to the U.S. mainland.
Previous surveys are reported in PCEI Technical Report, Issues 3, 7, 11, 13 and 14, which can be downloaded from http://www.uogpcei.org/resources-information/. PCEI plans to repeat this survey in early 2014.
The University of Guam Pacific Center for Economic Initiatives is a regional project funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration. It intends to help build local entrepreneurship capacity and local information resource capacity, as part of its comprehensive approach towards entrepreneurship and economic development in Guam. (UOG)