Greek economic sentiment index down significantly in February

Greek economic sentiment index fell significantly to 92.9 points in February, from 95.1 in January, to levels last seen in November 2016, the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research (IOBE) said on Wednesday.

In its monthly report, IOBE said that despite the February decline, the index remained higher compared with February 2016 levels (89 points). All sectors, with the exception of industry, recorded declines in February, mostly in retail commerce and constructions. Consumer confidence also fell significantly, falling to April 2016 levels (which was the lowest since August 2013).

An uncertain economic environment, because of prolonged negotiations to conclude a second review of the program and continuous postponement of any possible positive effects from completing a review on liquidity and labour market, were leading enterprises to review downwards their plans for the current year.

More specifically, business expectations in the industrial sector improved markedly over production levels in the coming months, while estimates over inventories rose and negative estimates over new orders and demand slightly improved.
In the services sector, business expectations over the current situation of enterprises turned negative, although estimates over short-term demand improved and estimates over current demand remaining almost unchanged.

In the retail commerce sector, positive business expectations over current sales de-escalated, along with estimates over short-term sales and estimates over inventories turned slightly negative.

In the construction sector, pessimistic estimates over work program deteriorated further although negative estimates over employment slightly improved.

In consumer confidence, the index fell as households’ became more pessimistic over their finances and the country’s finances in the coming months.