First-quarter (Q1) findings from the Qatar Quarterly Survey (QQS), an opinion-monitoring poll conducted by Qatar University’s Social and Economic Survey Research Institute (SESRI), suggest that social and economic optimism is high among Qataris, high-income and low-income expatriates.
Data collection for Q1 was conducted during the months of March and April 2014. A representative sample of 2,717 respondents (894 Qatari nationals, 889 high-income expatriates and 934 low-income expatriates) were asked about their personal financial situation, quality of life and perceptions on the overall economy in Qatar. Qatari citizens presented the highest ratings (90.8) in consumer confidence, followed by high-income (85.9) and low-income expatriates (87.3).
The Qatar Consumer Confidence Index is an indicator of the degree of optimism or pessimism that consumers express with respect to their personal financial situation and to the overall state of the economy, affecting their expenditures. A higher consumer confidence index is generally associated with more consumer purchases and economic expansion.
When asked to evaluate their current financial condition and share their future economic expectations, respondents’ answers revealed an upward trend, indicating relative financial security and optimistic prospects for the future. On their current economic conditions, Qatari citizens rated 86.8, high-income 77.3, and low-income expatriates 76.8. The survey also revealed optimism for future economic conditions, with Qatari citizens rated 92.1, high-income 88.7 and low-income expatriates 90.8.
Respondents indicated a positive outlook when rating Qatar as a place to live now, one year ago, and one year from now. Ratings were based on a scale from 0 to 100, with 0 representing the worst place to live, and 100 the best place to live. Ratings from a year ago showed 84 for Qatari citizens, 73 for high-income and 69 for low-income expatriates. Current-year ratings showed 92 for Qatari citizens, 78 for high-income and 77 for low-income expatriates. Year-ahead ratings showed 95 for Qatari citizens, 83 for high-income and 84 for low-income expatriates.
Commenting on the findings, SESRI director and Associate VP for Research Dr Darwish Alemadi, said, “Our survey results reveal high consumer confidence levels among Qatari residents, who remain optimistic about the economy. Findings from the QQS serve as important markers for business owners and policymakers who are looking for indicators on consumer behavior.”
SESRI’s head of research and QQS principal investigator Dr Abdoulaye Diop, said, “The findings, along with the upcoming results, will provide important information about the social and economic trends in Qatar.”
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