Ireland: Consumer sentiment falls in February from January’s 17-year high
The KBC Bank Ireland/ESRI consumer sentiment index dropped from January’s 17-year high of 110.4 points to 105.2 points in February. The decline was expected due to seasonal factors.
February’s moderation reflected a decline in almost all components of the index. Views of current economic conditions and the one-year outlook of the country dropped, largely due to the volatility observed in financial markets in February, as well as consumers’ view of modest wage growth in the country. A more pessimistic outlook on the economy affected consumers’ perception of their financial situations; they therefore also saw their one-year financial outlooks more negatively. Similarly, willingness to make major purchases declined notably in February.
Commenting on February’s reading, KBC Bank Ireland noted that:
“We would not exaggerate the significance of the decline in sentiment in February but would argue that (like the January survey before it) it suggests a still tricky path lies ahead for many Irish consumers.”