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Danish consumers positive about future, despite tentative economic outlook

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Danish consumers positive about future, despite tentative economic outlook
Shoppers in central Copenhagen. Photo: Linda Kastrup/Ritzau Scanpix
14:09 CEST+02:00
Consumers in Denmark are increasingly positive about their current financial situations and outlook for the future.

National stats bureau Statistics Denmark (DST) reports that consumer confidence levels increased to a rating of 6.3 in August, compared to 2.9 in July.

That represents the highest value for the measure so far this year.

The jump in consumer confidence may feel paradoxical in light of global events, including the US-China trade war and economists and experts warning of a broader downturn.

As such, the DST figure suggests that private economic situations are in good shape for many in Denmark, according to Tore Stramer, lead economist with financial institution Nykredit.

“It's a pleasant surprise. You could have been worried that, with increasing risk of global slowdown, Danes would be more cautious,” Stramer said in a written comment.

But most in Denmark are yet to feel the effects of bleaker economic forecasts, another expert said.

“We have relatively high disposable income. We are being paid more and inflation is low,” said Louise Aggerstrøm Hansen, an economist with Danske Bank.

“At the same time, interest has fallen hugely in recent months and that means lower interest costs for homeowners and more breathing space financially,” Hansen added.

READ ALSO: Can you really get paid for borrowing money in Denmark?

“For most people, what is happening immediately in front of them is decisive in whether they feel things are going well,” the economist said.

“Most still have a job, unemployment is not increasing, and the housing market is generally doing well,” she continued.

In the event of Denmark's economy slowing, the country is in a stronger position than when it was hit by the Global Financial Crisis over a decade ago, according to Hansen.

“We've had a healthier upswing. Where we have spent more money, that has been because we have had the money to spend. Not because of borrowing,” she said.

Consumer confidence is measured by surveying 1,000 people in Denmark on their own and the national economic situations.

READ ALSO: What you need to know when buying a home as a foreigner in Denmark

 
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