Czech Republic: Economic sentiment improves slightly in March
March 26, 2012
The March economic sentiment indicator published by the National Statistics Office inched up to 88.0 points from 87.9 points in February, which represents the highest level since October 2011. Despite the improvement, however, the index remains 4.6 points below the level observed in the same month last year. The March reading reflected an improvement in business sentiment. Accordingly, a majority of businesses continued to judge their current business situation as more favourable, while their expectations for the next six months remained unchanged compared to the previous month. Improving business confidence bodes well for investment going forward. On a negative note, consumer confidence declined sharply over the previous month. Respondents to the March survey showed concerns regarding general economic situation in the year ahead. Consumers also judge their own financial situation in more pessimistic terms compared to the previous month. Finally, a larger number of consumers expect unemployment to increase.
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist