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GKI business-consumer confidence index rises for first time since October

GKI's combined business-consumer confidence index climbed 5.9 points to minus 40.3 points in May, rising for the first time since October, the economic think tank said on Wednesday.

The index, prepared with the support of the European Union, dropped in every month from October to March, then stagnated in April.

The business confidence index increased 6.6 points to minus 30.4 points in May. Expectations improved in all sectors.

Confidence in the industrial sector improved markedly in May after rising slightly in April as outlooks improved and stocks continued to fall. Assessment of output, stock of orders and headcount were unchanged.

The building sector sub-index was little changed since March, reflecting a poor outlook. Construction companies' assessment of output and stock of orders worsened, but more companies planned to make new hires.

Confidence among trade companies improved slightly in May, as in April, after dropping in February and March. The assessment of sales position was much better and for stock of orders slightly better, though it worsened for product stock level.

Service sector companies reported better business, improving turnover and more plans to make new hires.

More companies in all sectors counted on falling prices. Fewer expected the state of the Hungarian economy to worsen and 5-10% saw an improvement in the future, up from practically 0% earlier.

GKI's consumer confidence index rose 4 points to minus 68.3 points.

Households were less pessimistic about their financial positions and their ability to make savings. They were also less afraid of layoffs. Inflation expectations diminished, and households' outlook for the economy improved. (MTI-Econews)