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Three-month decline in consumer confidence ends in August

The sharp fall in consumer confidence seen since May came to a halt in August, while business confidence deteriorated slightly, according to the latest GKI-Wallis combined consumer-business confidence index published on Monday.

The combined seasonally adjusted index fell 2 points to -18.7 in August compared to July, GKI said. The consumer confidence index improved a slight 1.3 points to -46.9 in August after plummeting from -24.4 to -48.2 points in May-July. Consumers were slightly more optimistic about the outlook for Hungary's economy and offered a more positive assessment of their financial situation. However, they were slightly more pessimistic about joblessness and about their ability make savings.
The business confidence index measured -8.8 in August, down 3 points from July but in line with January's confidence level, and improved from -15.2 in August 2005. Businesses across the board became slightly more pessimistic in August. Industrial companies' assessments of production and their outlook deteriorated. Their assessment of their stock of orders worsened, but they were more optimistic when assessing their stock of export orders. They also reported increased stocks. Companies in the construction sector also offered poorer assessments of their production and they reported a lower stock of orders. Their plans to make new hires, however, remained more or less unchanged. Trade companies reported a slight deterioration in their market positions, stock of orders, stocks and their outlook.