Consumers Concerned About Carbon Tax

Consumers are concerned about the financial impact of the carbon tax with most Australians believing it will result in cost increases, a national survey has found.

The poll  by leading mortgage broker Loan Market  which asked ‘Are you concerned about the financial impact of the carbon tax?found 59 per cent of respondents were “convinced” it will result in a rise in the cost of living.

Loan Market Corporate Spokesman Paul Smith said another nine per cent of the 739 online survey respondents thought there would be a small increase in living expenses.

Mr Smith said only 18 per cent of those surveyed were unperturbed by the introduction of the carbon tax on July 1 this year.

He said 14 per cent of respondents reserved judgment on the impact of the tax.

“The majority of those surveyed believe it at this point that the carbon tax will cost them more money even though there have been some compensation measures on offer from the federal government,” Mr Smith said.

“The carbon tax is another factor obviously weighing on consumer confidence in what are challenging times. Households have had to budget for substantial cost-of-living increases in the past year and this tax has consumers convinced they’re going to have to keep paying more.

“Consumers have been cautious and subdued for some time due to their concerns about the impact of the European debt situation and the direction of the domestic economy. A continuation of caution will result in an economic slowdown.”

Mr Smith said the concerns of consumers regarding the carbon tax could put more pressure on the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) to offer more interest rate relief.

“The RBA this year lowering its cash rate to 3.5 per cent has been welcomed by sectors such as retail and housing which have borne the brunt of the consumer unease,” he said.

“Fortunately, the RBA does have more room to move and this may be necessary over the months ahead.”

Survey results:

Are you concerned about the financial impact of the carbon tax?

Yes, I’m convinced it will increase the cost of living              59%

Slightly, cost rises will be minimal                                            9%

No, it won’t be as bad as some have made out               18%

Not sure, we will have to wait and see                             14%