The willingness to make investments has picked up perceivably among company managers in Central Europe, according to the latest issue of the corporate survey Deloitte Business Sentiment Index (DBSI). Interviewees felt it more than twice as likely that they would start investments in the coming 12 months than in September 2009, the time of the first survey.
The central component of the index rose 5 points to 119 from 114 in October last year.
Business confidence is improving at varying paces in the six countries of the region.
The survey shows that although Hungary remains one of the more pessimistic countries in the region, the expectations of Hungarian corporate managers are cautiously improving. More than half of interviewees said they expected the country's economic situation to improve in the coming six months, an increase of almost 40% from one year earlier and 13% from six months earlier.
Hungarian corporate managers are also becoming more optimistic in terms of revenue expectations, with almost two-thirds of interviewees expecting to see revenue growth and more managers than last year planning to introduce new products and services in the next 12 months.
Although Hungarian companies are still among the least inclined to make investments among those operating in the region, there has been considerable improvement. Around 17% more managers than one year earlier said they planned to make investments such as asset purchases over the next 12 months.
In terms of employment, however, Hungarian managers were more pessimistic than before regarding plans to hire new employees. Around 30% did not rule out the possibility of lay-offs this year, compared to 16% in April 2010, and just 23% had plans to hire new employees.