Italy: Lockdown sends business confidence to all-time low in May
The National Institute of Statistics (Istat)’s composite business confidence indicator (Clima di Fiducia delle Imprese Italiane, IESE)—which covers the manufacturing, construction, market services and retail sectors—collapsed to an all-time low of 51.1 in May from March’s 99.2 (the latest preceding month for which data is available).
May’s crash came on the back of a broad-based sharp worsening of sentiment across sectors. Confidence in the market services sector stumbled on souring assessments of order books and business trends, while sentiment in the retail trade sector flopped on plummeting expectations on the future sales and a collapse in assessments of current sales. Meanwhile, confidence in the construction sector slumped on weaker assessments of order books, while sentiment in the manufacturing sector weakened to a lesser extent.