The Energy Consumer Sentiment Survey is a long-term project for Energy Consumers Australia. It is designed to provide information on household and small business consumer sentiment with a focus on the three key areas of satisfaction, confidence and activity. As the survey is undertaken every six months it tracks changes in sentiment over time and detects trends which can inform energy market and policy development in the long-term interests of consumers.
The results from this survey (December 2018) also show an increase in satisfaction and confidence in overall energy market outcomes, off a low base compared with the survey in the same period a year ago.
- Satisfaction with the value for money of electricity improved nationally to 47% (up 13%), with the highest levels of satisfaction in South East Queensland 54% (up 16%), NSW 48% (up 14%) and Victoria 46% (up 12%).
- This contrasts with reliability, where nationally 74% (up 4%) of consumers say they are satisfied with the reliability of their electricity supply.
- There were also improvements in satisfaction with competition nationally, reaching 49% (up 10%) – the highest level over the six surveys. The improvement was particularly strong in South East Queensland where 61% of households said they were positive about the level of competition in the energy market (up 22%)..
- Consumer trust remains low, at 33% (up 10%) nationally. Consumers’ confidence that the market is working in their interests is the highest in Queensland (35%) and WA (36%).
- Consumer confidence in their abilities, availability of easily understood information and tools have all improved, compared with the same period a year ago, but remain relatively flat across the six surveys. While more than half of consumers are confident in their abilities to make choices, less than half of consumers say they have the information or tools they need.