Midwest Consumers Cautiously Optimistic about 2013 Economy During 2012
Holiday Season, Huntington Bank Survey Finds
Holiday purchases will be followed by home improvement and vacation spending
in the New Year, Huntington Bank Midwest Economic Index survey participants
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- December 11, 2012
Huntington Bank’s (NASDAQ: HBAN; www.huntington.com) first survey of consumers
in its Midwest markets, the newly created Midwest Economic Index, reveals
cautious post-election optimism about the U.S. economy in 2013 entering the
year-end holiday season.
Although just under 50 percent of consumers participating in the Huntington
Midwest Economic Index said they think the economy will be better next year,
the respondents all of whom live in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Western
Pennsylvania or West Virginia indicate a planned uptick in 2013 spending on
vacations and home improvement. The survey was conducted in an area of the
country that has outpaced the national economic recovery in terms of aggregate
The survey, conducted in mid-November, also revealed most consumers in
Huntington’s markets will spend as much or more on holiday purchases this year
compared with 2011.
“Huntington Bank launched the Midwest Economic Index to give our business and
consumer customers the local economic information they need to plan for 2013,”
said Steve Steinour, Huntington chairman, president and CEO. “The survey
confirms our analysis that the economy is slowly recovering and that consumers
are ready to spend more discretionary dollars.”
According to the Index:
*More than one-half (52 percent) of Midwest consumers plan 2013 home
improvement projects with the majority paid for in cash – up from 37
percent who completed home improvement projects in 2012. The average
budget amount for 2013 is $5,200.
*Three in four (75 percent) of Midwest consumers plan vacations away from
home in 2013, up from 63 percent in 2012. The average budget amount for
2013 is $3,200. More than 60 percent said they’ll pay up front with cash.
*As much as 70 percent of Midwest consumers plan to spend as much or more
on 2012 holiday purchases as last year. The average budget amount for
holiday purchases this year is $959.
*More than 70 percent of Midwest consumers plan to spend the same or more
in 2013 on clothing, dining out and entertainment.
While Midwest consumers are in the mood to spend more on some items, the
majority continue to defer major purchases. More than 60 percent said they
would not purchase or lease a new car in 2013.
Likewise, approximately 90 percent of respondents have no plans to buy or sell
a home in 2013. Nevertheless, just under half of all respondents to
Huntington’s Midwest Economic Index said they thought the real estate market
in their areas was improving.
“We are optimistic about the long-term prospects for the Midwest economy,”
Steinour said. “Since less than a fourth of survey participants were aware of
the comparative strength of this part of the country, Huntington will continue
its outreach to key business groups and media in our local markets and
nationally to highlight the importance of the Midwest as a driving factor
moving our national economy forward.”
The Huntington Midwest Economic Index surveyed a random sample of consumers in
Western Michigan, Eastern Michigan, Northern Ohio, Central and Southern Ohio,
Indianapolis, Western Pennsylvania and West Virginia, with statistically
relevant responses available for each region. More information is available at
Echo Research conducted 2,100 online interviews (n=2,133) among adult
consumers within the five primary Midwestern regions of the Huntington Bank
Community – Ohio, Michigan, Western Pennsylvania, Indianapolis, and West
Virginia. Respondents participated from Nov. 12-20, 2012. These findings have
a margin of error +/- 2.1 percent at a 95 percent confidence level.
Huntington Bancshares Incorporated is a $56 billion regional bank holding
company headquartered in Columbus, Ohio. The Huntington National Bank, founded
in 1866, provides full-service commercial, small business, and consumer
banking services; mortgage banking services; treasury management and foreign
exchange services; equipment leasing; wealth and investment management
services; trust services; brokerage services; customized insurance brokerage
and service programs; and other financial products and services. The principal
markets for these services are Huntington’s six-state banking franchise: Ohio,
Michigan, Pennsylvania, Indiana, West Virginia, and Kentucky. The primary
distribution channels include a banking network of more than 690 traditional
branches and convenience branches located in grocery stores and retirement
centers, and through an array of alternative distribution channels including
internet and mobile banking, telephone banking, and more than 1,380 ATMs.
Through automotive dealership relationships within its six-state banking
franchise area and selected other Midwest and New England states, Huntington
also provides commercial banking services to the automotive dealers and retail
automobile financing for dealer customers.
About Echo Research
Echo Research (www.echoresearch.com) has a 23-year track record in
communications research – media content analysis, stakeholder evaluation and
reputation measurement. As part of the Ebiquity Group (www.ebiquity.com), Echo
and Ebiquity are leaders in above- and below-line communications tracking and
research, providing independent data-driven insights to the global media, CMO
and CCO community to continuously improve clients’ business performance.
Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available:
Huntington Bancshares Incorporated
Maureen M. Brown, 614-480-5512
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