Despite all the global economic worries over the last few years recently released ABS figures show that Australian household wealth climbed 18.4 per cent in the past year to $69,422 per person.
This makes us the wealthiest we’ve been in 5 years
However, I bet if you asked the average Australian, they wouldn’t say they feel wealthier. Many are still being spooked by the continual barrage of negative media.With all the overseas worries as well as local concerns – things like the mining boom slowing and and all the negative media about the state of our economy, Australians have been saving rather than spending since the GFC.
They’re stashing their cash in savings accounts, paying down their credit card debts and paying down their mortgages.
Social researcher Mark McCrindle said on news.com.au that Australians were feeling insecure rather than wealthy, with memories of the GFC still raw and hitting sentiment as they watched reports of financial turmoil overseas.
“Then they open their mail and their water and electricity bills are going ballistic,” he said.
“We have found when people are looking to 2013 and the fears they have about the year ahead, cost of living is number one. Even for Generation Y it’s number one.”
Mr McCrindle said Australia’s economic fundamentals were “great”, with low interest rates, low unemployment and a stable economy.
“But it doesn’t matter how often the Treasurer says we are in the best place in the world, it just doesn’t feel that way,” he said.
“Whether the storm clouds prove to be a storm or not, people are seeing storm clouds. People feel the economy could turn quite quickly and they don’t want to be exposed again.”
Yes we’ve gone through some difficult times, but consumer sentiment is starting to turn and I think this will improve over 2013.
There’s no doubt we live in “the lucky country”, however some people can’t see past the problems. Over the year as some as the pessimists will argue that the glass is half empty and the optimists will see it as half full, the realists will be drinking the cup and taking advantage of the opportunities the markets will present them.