Sunday 18 February 2018

Consumer confidence boost from promissory note deal but caution remains

By Ailish O’Hora

CONSUMER confidence received a boost from the Anglo Irish promissory note deal struck last month but sentiment remains cautious, according to the latest index.

Consumer sentiment slipped back to 59.4 in February from the four month high in January, mainly on job concerns.

The Irish consumer remains in a difficult place, according to the KBC/ESRI consumer confidence index.

However, while there is little likelihood that a pronounced “feel good” factor will develop any time soon, it’s more likely that consumers may gradually become more attuned to positive economic news and the “fear factor” should gradually decrease provided there are no renewed setbacks to the global economy.

In contrast to the jobs element of the survey, there was only a fractional decline in consumers’ assessment of the outlook for the Irish economy may reflect the absence of any particular negative driver as well as some positive impact from the promissory note deal.

“A clear comparison of survey responses shows a clear but not dramatic improvement in the wake of reaching the promissory note deal,” according to the latest index.

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