Belgium: Consumer and business confidence both ebb from multi-year highs in August
The consumer confidence indicator produced by the National Bank of Belgium (NBB) came in at plus 5 in August, falling from July’s plus 8 result, but remaining in optimistic territory. Households’ views on the economic situation in the country for the next year fell dramatically, particularly in the regions more severely hit from last month’s severe floods. Moreover, consumers turned more pessimistic regarding their views on the future of their financial situation. On a brighter not, their expectations regarding employment continued to improve for the same period.
NBB’s business confidence index dropped to plus 7.6 in August from July’s plus 10.1 reading which had marked the strongest print on record. The bleaker outlook was broad-based, with firms across all sectors considered in the survey reporting deteriorating sentiment, despite an improvement in the employment outlook.