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Westpac-Melbourne Institute consumer confidence for April 2021 is highest since August 2010

Australians are the most financially optimistic they have been since the mining boom more than a decade ago despite the slow Covid vaccine rollout.

The Westpac-Melbourne Institute consumer confidence reading for April was the highest since August 2010, even with lockdown threats looming.

The last time Australians were so upbeat about the economy, the Australian dollar was close to reaching parity with the American greenback.

More than a decade on, the Australian dollar is worth less than 77 US cents and the tourism and hospitality industries have been crippled by lockdowns. 

Despite that, and the end of JobKeeper wage subsidies, there was an expectation of a robust recovery.

Australians are the most optimistic they have ever been since the mining boom more than a decade ago despite the slow Covid vaccine rollout. The Westpac-Melbourne Institute consumer confidence reading for April was the highest since August 2010, following the worst of the Global Financial Crisis. Pictured is Sydney business owner

Australians are the most optimistic they have ever been since the mining boom more than a decade ago despite the slow Covid vaccine rollout. The Westpac-Melbourne Institute consumer confidence reading for April was the highest since August 2010, following the worst of the Global Financial Crisis. Pictured is Sydney business owner

Australians are the most optimistic they have ever been since the mining boom more than a decade ago despite the slow Covid vaccine rollout. The Westpac-Melbourne Institute consumer confidence reading for April was the highest since August 2010, following the worst of the Global Financial Crisis. Pictured is Sydney business owner

‘This is an extraordinary result,’ Westpac chief economist Bill Evans said.

The reading for April, based on a survey of 1,200 people, stood at 118.8 points – well above the 100 mark which marked an even distribution between optimists and pessimists.

During the past year, the reading of consumer confidence has soared 57 per cent.

Consumers were particularly optimistic about economic conditions during the next 12 months, with this measure surging by 133.8 per cent during the past year to 125.5 points.

Low unemployment – back to 5.8 per cent – and a 12-year high in job vacancies indicated businesses were also expecting an economic boom.

‘Clearly, confidence would have been buoyed by positive news around the labour market,’ Mr Evans said.

The reading for April, based on a survey of 1,200 people, stood at an 11-year high of 118.8 points - a level well above the 100 mark dividing optimists from pessimists. Pictured are shoppers at Melbourne's Bourke Street Mall

The reading for April, based on a survey of 1,200 people, stood at an 11-year high of 118.8 points - a level well above the 100 mark dividing optimists from pessimists. Pictured are shoppers at Melbourne's Bourke Street Mall

The reading for April, based on a survey of 1,200 people, stood at an 11-year high of 118.8 points – a level well above the 100 mark dividing optimists from pessimists. Pictured are shoppers at Melbourne’s Bourke Street Mall

Australians are less impressed about the surge in property prices, which rose by 2.8 per cent nationally in March – the fastest monthly pace since October 1988, CoreLogic data showed.

The question of whether now was a good time to buy real estate fell by 7.9 per cent in April to 107.2 points.

‘Buyers appear to be discouraged by the recent surge in prices and implications for affordability,’ Mr Evans said.

‘Housing affordability appears to be weighing on home buyer sentiment.’

Despite the slow Covid vaccine rollouts, Australians in April were optimistic despite the end of JobKeeper wage subsidies. Picturedi is registered nurse Maddison Williams receiving a Pfizer jab

Despite the slow Covid vaccine rollouts, Australians in April were optimistic despite the end of JobKeeper wage subsidies. Picturedi is registered nurse Maddison Williams receiving a Pfizer jab

Despite the slow Covid vaccine rollouts, Australians in April were optimistic despite the end of JobKeeper wage subsidies. Picturedi is registered nurse Maddison Williams receiving a Pfizer jab

Consumers were particularly optimist about economic conditions during the next 12 months, with this measure surging by 133.8 per cent during the past year to 125.5 points

Consumers were particularly optimist about economic conditions during the next 12 months, with this measure surging by 133.8 per cent during the past year to 125.5 points

Consumers were particularly optimist about economic conditions during the next 12 months, with this measure surging by 133.8 per cent during the past year to 125.5 points

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