Italy: Consumer confidence sinks as economy stagnates
The consumer confidence index released by the National Institute of Statistics (ISTAT) declined to 109.6 points in June from May’s revised 111.6 points (previously reported: 111.8 points), marking the weakest reading in close to two years.
June’s decline was broad-based: the economic, personal, current, and future components, all lost ground, although to varying extents. Consumers’ assessments of the current general economic situation and their expectations on the future general economic situation deteriorated notably, as the economy is stuck in stagnation and due to reigniting tensions between the government and EU institutions over fiscal policies. Accordingly, their outlook on unemployment rose much gloomier, and their assessments of current and future savings opportunities also receded. Moreover, households’ willingness to buy big-ticket items plunged. Additionally, some deteriorations were recorded in households’ assessments of their current financial and economic situation, which may be ascribed to stagnant wages and productivity.