Ireland: Consumer confidence reaches highest point since May 2007
February 5, 2014
The KBC Bank Ireland/ESRI Consumer Sentiment index climbed 4.8 points over the previous month and reached 84.6 points in January, marking the highest level since May 2007. According to the survey report, the rise in sentiment was driven by consumers', "more positive mood as it seems they expect the Irish economy to improve and unemployment to fall further in the coming year." The report also explained that an improvement in sentiment from December to January is typical due to the Christmas and year-end sales boost.
The strong increase in the current economic conditions index in January reflected, in part, that consumers are more optimistic regarding their current financial situations and their ability to purchase durable goods. The consumer expectations index also rose over the previous month. Consumers foresee improvements in unemployment and they feel more optimistic about the state of the general economy over the next 12 months.
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect private consumption to expand 1.2% in 2014, which is up 0.3 percentage points from last month's forecast. For 2015, the panel sees private consumption increasing 1.1%.
Author: Carl Kelly, Economist