MANILA, Philippines - Filipino consumers are more optimistic in the first quarter of the year, amid low oil prices and higher household income, a Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP) survey showed.
Results from the BSP's latest Consumer Expectations Survey (CES) showed that the confidence index improved to -10 in the first quarter from -21.8 percent in the previous quarter.
A negative index means there are more pessimists than optimists during the period.
The improved outlook during the first quarter was attributed to expectations of lower oil prices and stable prices of commodities, as well as higher family income and availability of more jobs. The peso appreciation and developments in the country's road infrastructure also helped boost consumers' optimism.
Other factors cited by the respondents for the improved outlook were less calamities, less corruption in government and more assistance from the government.
For the second quarter of 2015, Filipino consumers' sentiment was even more favorable. The confidence index increased and remained in positive territory to 4.4 percent, from 0.7 percent in the previous quarter's survey.
This indicates the number of consumers with favorable views increased and exceeded those with unfavorable views.
Consumer confidence is measured across three indicators -- country's economic condition, family financial situation and family income.
"The improvement in consumer outlook was broad-based and evident among income groups with the middle-income group showing the biggest improvement in sentiment, followed by the low-income group. The high income group, however, continued to be the most bullish across income groups," the BSP said.
The BSP survey, which was conducted from January 26 to February 5, covered 5,818 households.