The latest forecast from Finans Norge shows that confidence in our personal, and the national, economy is back to the same level it was at before the oil price drop of 2014.
Norwegians’ confidence for the future plummeted following the fall in oil prices in 2014. It took until the end of last year for optimism slowly to begin to return.
Since the close of 2016, there have been increasing numbers who look more brightly on prospects for the future. Norwegians’ expectations are now back to what Finans Norge refers to as a ‘normal level’.
‘Consumers in all parts of the country have regained the belief that Norway is heading towards brighter economic times. At the same time, the forecast barometer shows that we are realists’, said CEO, Idar Kreutzer of Finance Norway.
Fish, oil and tourism
The forecast barometer is a quarterly collaboration between Finans Norge and Kantar TNS. The barometer measures Norwegian households’ expectations for their own and the national economy.
Compared to the second quarter of this year, especially Trøndelag and Northern Norway are indicative of increasing optimism in the third quarter.
‘This largely reflects good economic growth in Northern Norway,’ said Kreutzer.
He gave the examples of growth in seafood exports, good numbers for tourism, and revised estimates for oil and gas resources in the Barents Sea, as potential reasons for the changes in these regions.
Fears of inequality
On the other hand, this year’s third forecast-barometer displayed a significantly lower degree of optimism among those without higher education.
‘An explanation may be that due to digitisation and automation, working life will require increased competence. There may be a fear of greater inequality in Norway as the winners may become those who spend longer in education.
This is a challenge we are going to take seriously, Kreutzer points out.
A large percentage of the 1,000 who participated in the survey said they will ‘repay loans’, or ‘save’.
At the same time, we have to return to 2011 to find an equal numbers who said that they want to spend the extra money on redecorating.
More respondents said they’re considering a major purchase than in the previous quarter. On the other hand, there was a decline among those who want to spend money on purchasing houses.
‘That so many say they will save or repay debt shows that Norwegians appear to be optimistic realists. With increased optimism, one might think that the saving would decline, but that’s not the case. This balanced realism, I hope, will continue’, said Kreutzer.
© NTB Scanpix / Norway Today