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As Vietnam exports slow, survey shows consumer gloom on the rise

Workers take on side jobs to make ends meet amid inflation and factory worries

Vietnamese will spend on food and beverages but cut back on big-ticket purchases because of concerns about the economy, Infocus Mekong Research says. (Photo by Lien Hoang)

HO CHI MINH CITY -- Vietnamese are resorting to side hustles as factory work slows and inflation rockets to the top of consumer concerns, according to a new survey reflecting fears about the global economy.

Moonlighting has long been popular in the Southeast Asian manufacturing hub. But the share of people relying on extra income sources rose to 34% in January, versus 20% in July, Infocus Mekong Research said on Monday. In the company's biannual poll, 27% of consumers expect the coming year will be worse than the last, up from 18% in July. The pessimism indicates "uncertainty in the market, fueled by the real estate bubble burst, high inflation" and impacts on earnings, Infocus said.

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