Despite economic challenges, urban africans remain optimistic about the future

TORONTO, June 5th, 2016 /CNW/ - KASI Insight study finds the majority of urban dwellers in Kenya, Ghana and Cameroon have cash flow issues

When it comes to managing their cash flow, new research by KASI Insight has found that 6 out of 10 urban dwellers in three countries in Africa often run out of cash. The study reveals that only 1 out of 10 respondents said they never run out of cash with men more likely to be broke than women. While cash is short, efforts to do something about it show promise.

The ongoing cash shortage explains why 18% of the respondents prefer jobs that pay daily as opposed to weekly or monthly. It is an interesting finding when we know most jobs in Africa pay monthly and require household to manage and budget in advance. Building a reserve fund is critical.

The survey conducted from Jan 18th to Feb 1st collected responses from over 3000 respondents, also explored overall sentiment and expectations for 2016. Overall, the sense of optimism in the future is low among the respondents. Among the three countries, respondents in Ghana are the least hopeful about the future while respondents in Kenya are the most optimistic. Across all three countries, university graduates are most optimistic about the future.

When asked about the economic prospect of their country, only 1 in 10 respondents expect it to be good. Ghana fares the worst with less than 1% of respondents hopeful in the economic prospect. The same is true for their social and political environment with three-quarters of respondents expecting a poor political environment in 2016. The three are tied together. Rising cost of living is partly to blame.

Respondents in Kenya are the most optimistic with one-quarter expecting the social and political situation to be good in 2016. This small group with a positive outlook can be a vanguard for improvement.

“Ghana had a challenging year with a prolonged power shortage that slowed the economic activity in 2015 and even going into 2016. Kenya on the other hand had a relatively good year with major events such as the visit of Barack Obama and Pope Francis to name a few” said Yannick Lefang, Founder of KASI Insight

The results also showed sense of optimism differs by gender, education and age. Women are slightly more hopeful than men in general that the economic, social and political environment will improve in 2016. Respondents aged between 25-34 years old tend to be most pessimistic with 1 out of 4 saying that the overall economic situation of the country will be poor in 2016. It seems that this sentiment is the same for people with university (22%) or high school (20%). The poor economic environment is equally impacting people with higher education and just high school.

The good news is people we’ve surveyed are taking matter in their own hands. 80% of them said they made New Year resolutions with the top ones being: To be healthy (25%) and to manage my money well (25%). Kenya shows the highest proportion of respondents who say they want to Start a business (13%) as a New Year resolution. Getting a job is a priority in Kenya and Cameroon but not at all in Ghana.

This study also allowed us to confirm some key characteristics of our target respondents called Africa’s emerging class. The emerging class are people who have medium to long term time horizons, are tech savvy, and are well educated with at least a university degree.

It’s reassuring to see that the majority of the emerging class is making New Year resolutions and taking matters into their own hands in environments that are usually challenging. Their New Year resolutions translate into concrete actions such as buying exercise gear or eating healthy as part of their resolution to be healthy.

About the KASI Consumer Insight Report

This study is part of the monthly KASI Insight internal research and was conducted via an online survey of 3000 urban dwellers in Kenya, Ghana and Cameroon. Responses were collected from January 18th to February 2nd, 2016. Analyses and interpretation was provided by our team of experts.

About KASI Insight

An internet-based information platform that empowers business leaders and organizations with reliable data and actionable insights from Africa. With deep roots in Africa and the data analytics and visualization tools, we crowdsource data and insights from millions of middle class Africans to help you understand, track and serve the fastest growing consumer market in the world. KASI Insight is becoming the leader in leveraging the African crowd and wisdom to drive success of your business in Africa.

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Media Contacts:

Arielle Nkongmeneck

KASI Insight


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