Sydney, March 14: Australia’s consumer sentiment has tumbled after the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) decided to leave the cash rate unchanged at 4.25 percent in February and March, a survey showed Wednesday.
The Westpac/Melbourne Institute Consumer Sentiment Index fell by 5.0 percent to 96.1 index points in March, from 101.1 in February.
Westpac chief economist Bill Evans said the index had fallen below the level in October 2011 prior to the RBA’s two rate cuts in November and December, reported Xinhua.
“With the Index below the 100 level, pessimists clearly outnumber optimists,” Evans said in a statement Wednesday.
“Sensitivity to interest rates has, clearly, been one factor responsible for this weak print.”