Financial impact of the pandemic
The economy in Hong Kong continued to recover at 5.4% real GDP growth.1 In Q4 2021, most household finances have recovered (75%; increased 13 percentage points from Q3), and consumers were optimistic about finances (68%; increased 26 percentage points from Q3) in the next 12 months.
The survey showed vaccinated respondents enjoyed better than planned household finances over the unvaccinated. More than half (57%; increased 33 percentage points from Q3) of those fully vaccinated stated their finances were better than planned, with the same metric at 19% for unvaccinated respondents. Consumer finances are expected to continue to recover as the vaccination rate rises.
Spending and savings
The Oct. release of second instalment consumption vouchers provided stimulus to the economy. Just under half of respondents (49%; increased 13 percentage points) increased household spending budget, and 70% of consumers planned to spend the same or more this holiday season than last year. On the other hand, some consumers are opting to save as one-third of respondents (33%; increased 10 percentage points) saved more for retirement.
Product space shift
A changing macroeconomic environment and consumer habits have redefined the space of lending products. The top three loan products are personal loan, tax loan and revolving loan at 35%, 19% and 18%, respectively. New products, such as buy-now-pay-later (BNPL), have provided customers with different ways to manage their finances. Most respondents (78%) stated the terms and conditions are easy to understand, and 82% (increased 12 percentage points) found the service at least somewhat valuable.
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