A mixed set of data releases from Italy highlighted the uncertainty and fragility of the Italian economy. The Italian business and consumer confidence data provided little clarity on the prospects for the country’s delicate economic growth. Morale amongst Italian businesses and consumers were shown to be moving in different directions in January.
Italian Business Confidence
In a report released by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development on Friday, it was reported that Italian Business Confidence increased to a seasonally adjusted 104.8, up from the 103.7 recorded in December whose figure was revised up from 103.5. The unexpected increase came after analysts had expected Italian Business Confidence to stay unchanged at 103.5 last month. Manufacturing morale reached its highest level for over a year. Morale also improved in the construction industry and service sectors, however there was a steep decline amongst retailers.
Italian Consumer Confidence
The Italian National Institute of Statistics reported that Italian consumer confidence increased at a less-than-expected rate last month. Italian Consumer Confidence increased to 108.8, from the 110.9 recorded in December, whose figure was revised down from 111.1. The disappointing figures came after analysts had been expecting Italian Consumer Confidence to increase to 110.6 in December
The mixed data highlighted the fragility of the Italian economy, the 3rd largest in the Eurozone and the 8th largest in the world.
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