Brussels, 30 August 2010
August 2010: Economic Sentiment Indicator on the up after July's surge
Important notice: since May 2010 business surveys data are classified in accordance with an updated version of the Nomenclature of Economic Activities (NACE rev. 2) causing a potential break in series at this date
After the surge in July, the Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI) continued to improve in both the EU and the euro area, albeit at a slower pace. It rose to 102.7 (up by 0.6 of a point) in the EU and to 101.8 (up by 0.7 of a point) in the euro area. In both the EU and the euro area the ESI is above its long-term average.
Economic sentiment indicator (s.a.)
EU: August 102.7 Euro area: August 101.8
Among the largest Member States, the UK registered the most significant gain (+1.5), followed by Germany (+1.1) which remains in the lead. Improvements were less pronounced in Spain (+0.9) and in France (+0.4). In contrast, sentiment deteriorated in Italy (-0.9), Poland (-0.9) and even more so in the Netherlands (-2.1).
Sentiment in industry improved (by 1 point) in the EU and remained broadly unchanged in the euro area. The majority of respondents in this sector reported sizeable improvements in their order books. However, managers were cautious regarding their production expectations.
As indicated in the flash estimate released earlier, confidence among consumers improved markedly (+3) in both EU and euro area. Widely-felt optimism about the general economic situation as well as further considerable easing of unemployment fears set the tone. Confidence indicator in services decreased by 1 point in the EU and improved by 1 point in the euro area. Managers' pessimistic assessment of the past business situation in the UK explains the difference in trends between the two areas. Sentiment in the retail sector gained 1 point in the EU and remained broadly unchanged in the euro area. Sentiment indicator in construction remained broadly unchanged in both regions.
After a sharp drop in July, confidence in financial services – not included in the ESI – registered a significant increase in the EU (+7) due to a substantially brighter future demand outlook. In the euro area the confidence indicator remained broadly unchanged, after having improved in July.
Industrial confidence indicator (s.a.)
EU: August -3
Euro area: August -4
Service confidence indicator (s.a.)
EU: August 5
Euro area: August 7
Consumer confidence indicator (s.a.)
EU: August -11
Euro area: August -11
Retail trade confidence indicator (s.a.)
EU: August 1
Euro area: August -4
Construction confidence indicator (s.a.)
EU: August -31
Euro area: August -29
Financial services confidence indicator (n.s.a.)
EU: August 19
Euro area: August 23
The next Business and Consumer Survey is due to be published on 29 September 2010.
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