France: Business confidence stabilizes in September
September 25, 2012
The September business sentiment index published by the National Statistical Institute (INSEE) remained unchanged at August's 90 points. The stable reading defied market expectations, which had business confidence inching down to 89 points. At the current level, business sentiment remains below its long-term average of 100 points, where it has now languished since September 2011. The monthly result reflected a decrease in finished-goods inventory levels as well as a deterioration in general production expectations. In contrast, demand and total order levels as well as personal production expectations improved over the previous month. According to the Central Bank's monthly index of business activity (MIBA), GDP is expected to contract 0.1% in the third quarter.