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ASIA PACIFIC Company Profile. Mastercard Economics Institute Scholarship Changing Wallets report has provided key insights into how people in Asia Pacific spend their money in a rapidly changing global economy, and travel is key.

Analyzing what, where and when money is spent, the report shows that habits that provide opportunities, experiences or both are most evident in this area.

Globally, consumer airline bookings remain approximately +16% above the levels of 2019 until August 2022, which shows strong demand after the first half despite the rise in economic pressures (click to enlarge)

The authors of the report note that Asia Pacific has seen a significant recovery in outbound travel following the re-opening of borders, despite rising air travel costs. This is particularly evident in markets such as Singapore and Australia, where demand for energy continues to rise beyond the initial easing of restrictions, the report says.

Similarly, spending on experiences is moving beyond spending on ‘things’, the report says, which is reflected in spending on experiences such as dining or entertainment.

According to the report, consumers in Asia Pacific are increasingly ordering from restaurants – in person or online – rather than preparing their own meals at home, with consumption of restaurants rising +16% in August from January 2022. Meanwhile, spending on groceries has dropped -5 % compared to the same.

According to the survey, despite the impressive recovery in long-haul use, the growth of short-haul flights remains 20% higher than the long-haul sector worldwide (click to enlarge)

Mastercard AP & MEA Chief Economist David Mann said: “Consumers in Asia Pacific are looking to make up for lost time after a few difficult years. The need to pent-up to see new places and find new products is driving consumers to spend more. It’s putting moving forward, restaurants, entertainment and experiences, we expect to see more and more in transportation and entertainment.”

He added: “In addition, we are seeing new opportunities for online businesses, as goods and services leave the weekend. As digital shopping and remote services continue to affect our daily habits, consumers will change and change their preferences to adapt to changing lifestyles. ours.”

This chart shows the global change in spending by day of the week (click to enlarge)

Here are some of the key spending trends in Asia Pacific, according to a report by the Mastercard Economics Institute.

Consumers prioritize travel expenses. While labor shortages and rising fuel prices are driving up the cost of air travel, spending on travel and experiences remains tight for consumers in the Asia Pacific.

  • Singapore is showing the highest demand in APAC for international travel, with airline bookings for consumers up +10% over 2019 levels from June 2022, despite increasing demand and price pressures.
  • In Australia, long-haul flight bookings are up +92% in August 2022 compared to August 2019, and short-haul flight bookings are up +155%.
  • Consumer spending in ASEAN has rebounded in the main retail, travel and leisure sectors, with retail spending at 1.5x pre-pandemic levels as of June this year.

Small businesses show gains in online services. Globally, large businesses are outpacing smaller ones in digital transformation – but small online service providers in APAC are still finding ways to improve.

  • In Singapore, small business online services – such as teaching, healthcare and personal services – increased more than 3.5x compared to 2019.
  • However, the gap between large and small businesses online is particularly evident in the highly developed ecommerce industry – ecommerce sales for large Singaporean businesses grew +200% compared to +59% for small retailers. online in August 2022 compared to 2019. Likewise in Australia. , large businesses grew +93% versus +24% for small businesses online.

Gone are the days of being selected for use. Working from home and the transition to digital has blurred the lines: night is every night, and leisurely shopping trips are no longer just weekends. This has great implications for employees and suppliers for retailers, restaurants, and other businesses.

  • Consumers in Malaysia, Singapore and New Zealand have given up on weekend entertainment in 2022 compared to 2019, beating the weekend crowd by going for weekday tickets and theaters on Mondays and Tuesdays.
  • Queuing disruptions from the weekend are also seen in supermarkets. In Hong Kong, spending on Saturdays and Sundays in 2022 in supermarkets decreased by -1.22% and -1.42%, respectively, compared to 2019, while spending on Tuesdays increased by +2.84%.
  • Similar results were seen in Singapore, where retail sales fell -2.8% and -2.46% on Friday and Saturday respectively, but rose +1.87% on Thursday.
  • In contrast, restaurants have seen an increase in spending over the weekend, with strong Saturday sessions in Hong Kong, up +2.75%, Malaysia (+2.10%) and Singapore, (+1.8%).

Find the full report, including data and insights from other parts of the world, here.


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