GKI-Erste confidence index rises to level of autumn 2011 in February


GKI-Erste's combined consumer and business confidence index rose to the level of last autumn in February after falling steadily for almost a year.

The survey shows both business - with the exception of the construction sector - and consumers were slightly more optimistic than in January.

The industrial confidence index rose considerably after four bad months, returning to its level of autumn 2011. Companies' assessment of production in the recent period and of orders including export orders improved, while the gauge of inventories deteriorated slightly.

The index for the construction sector fell markedly after levelling out in February. Companies assessed the output of the past three months considerably better but their view of orders and employment prospects worsened.

The commercial sector index rose slightly after a bigger increase in January. Companies' opinion of orders improved but worsened of their sales position.

The service sector confidence index rose to make up for most of the fall in the previous two months.

Companies' employment plans strengthened in all sectors except the construction industry, but there are more companies planning to reduce headcount than those planning to increase staff numbers. Fears of getting unemployed lessened.

Plans to raise prices decreased in all sectors except for the construction sector where pressure to reduce prices lessened.

Consumers' inflationary expectations became stronger again after falling in January, which in turn followed five months of strengthening.

GKI's consumer confidence index rose in February after declining almost steadily for almost 18 months. Households became less pessimistic regarding their prospective financial situation and ability to make savings as well as their capacity to purchase consumer durables. Consumers were more optimistic about the future than they were in their assessment of the present.

The assessment of the situation of the Hungarian economy improved in all sectors as well as among consumers, although those expecting to see a deterioration still outnumber those seeing an improvement.


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