Belgium Economic Sentiment


Belgium: Business confidence and consumer confidence improve in February

February 24, 2015

The business confidence index elaborated by the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) improved from January’s minus 8.8 points to minus 8.3 points in February. The reading came in below the minus 7.8 points that the markets had expected. According to the NBB, the result was due to an improvement in confidence in manufacturing, business-related services and trade. Conversely, confidence in building industry deteriorated compared to January.

The consumer confidence index elaborated by the NBB increased for the third month in a row from minus 9.0 points in January to minus 5.0 points in February. The result marked a one-year high. According to the NBB, consumers have become more optimistic regarding their personal savings capacity and financial situation. Moreover, the Bank pointed out that, “[c]onsumers regarded the economic outlook with a more favorable eye.” However, expectations regarding unemployment deteriorated for the fifth month in a row.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect fixed investment to expand 3.0% in 2015, which is unchanged from last month’s projection. For 2016, the panel sees fixed investment growing at 2.6%. FocusEconomics panelists expect private consumption to grow 1.3% in 2015, which is up 0.1 percentage points from last month’s estimate. For 2016, the panel also expects private consumption to grow 1.3%.

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Belgium Economic Sentiment Chart

Belgium Economic Sentiment February 2015 0

Note: Business and Consumer Confidence Indicators.
Source: National Bank of Belgium (NBB).

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