GKI-Erste: Consumer, business confidence down slightly in February


GKI-Erste's combined gauge of consumer and business confidence fell to minus 3.2 points in February from 2.9 points in January as consumer expectations improved somewhat, but business expectations worsened slightly, Hungarian news agency MTI said today.

The business index edged down to 3.5 points from 4.4 points while the consumer index improved to minus 22.4 points in February from minus 23.8 points in January.

Business expectations improved minimally in industry and trade, but worsened among service and construction companies. Industrial companies' assessment of output in the previous period as well as that of the order stock and inventories improved slightly. On the other hand, the assessment of the outlook for production in the next period was again more pessimistic.

The construction sector index reached a fifteen-month low in February, with the assessment of the order stock deteriorating slightly. Trade companies were more pessimistic with regards to their sales position, though more optimistic regarding inventories and prospective orders. The service sector index continued to fall as the assessment of business in general improved, but turnover in the previous and coming periods worsened.

People's inflationary expectations continued to decrease and their unemployment fears also lessened.

The assessment of the outlook for the Hungarian economy improved across all sectors, however, those expecting to see a deterioration are still a majority, excluding the service sector. Consumers are also only slightly more optimistic on this matter.

Households' assessment of their own financial outlook improved slightly and substantially more said they would be able to put aside savings in the coming period.

The seasonally adjusted GKI-Erste index is supported with European Union funding.

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