Friday 15 November 2019

Consumer confidence little changed

Louisa Fahy

Irish consumer confidence was little changed last month amid "tentative" signs the worst may be over for the economy.

The consumer sentiment index was at 53.3 in December compared with 53.6 in November, KBC Ireland and the Economic & Social Research Institute in Dublin said in a report today. The index remains below its 14-year average of 92.4.

“There are tentative signs that consumers sense the worst may be over for the Irish economy,” KBC Ireland chief economist Austin Hughes said in the report. There has been “an easing in the degree of pessimism about the year ahead.”

While the economy technically exited a recession in the third quarter and the pace of job losses is easing, concern about possible cuts by the Government in the budget last month kept household confidence in check. About 75pc of responses to the survey were received prior to the December 10 budget, KBC said.

The measure of how consumers view their current situation weakened to 73 in December from 77.1 in November, according to the survey. The index of consumers’ perceptions of their future financial situation rose to 40.1 from 37.7.


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