Business, consumer sentiment improve in January

Analysis

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Sentiment among both businesses and consumers improved in January, state news wire MTI reports, citing the latest gauge of confidence by economic research institute GKI.

The combined measure of business and consumer confidence stood at 0.1 point in January, edging up from -1.8 points in December.

GKI's business confidence index rose to 6.4 from 4.4 points as sentiment improved in all branches but the service sector.

Industrial companies' assessments of order stocks and production outlooks improved, while views on inventories and export opportunities deteriorated.

In the construction sector, sentiment improved within the margin of error, although confidence in the building segment fared better than that in the civil engineering segment. Assessments of output in the previous three months and order stocks improved.

In the commerce sector, views on sales positions improved "significantly" while order stocks were "a little better", GKI said.

Service sector companies were less optimistic about business in general and turnover in the coming period.

The consumer confidence index rose to -17.8 points from -19.4 points. More households said their financial situations had improved and more could make savings. The number that planned big-ticket purchases declined.

GKI's gauge of sentiment is supported by European Union funding.

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