Ekonomické zprávy

Belgium’s business confidence remains almost unchanged in April

The National Bank of Belgium (NBB) said Monday its monthly business survey revealed business confidence was nearly unchanged in April compared to March, remaining moderately pessimistic overall.

According to the survey, the indicator, measuring the Belgian business leaders’ confidence, slipped to -7.8 in April from -7.6 in the prior month. That marked the first deterioration in business sentiment after four straight months of improvement.

Economists had predicted the indicator to rise to -5.8 in April.

The largest loss of confidence occurred in the manufacturing industry (-1.3 points m-o-m to -12.1 in April) as deteriorated assessment of orders books and employment expectations overshadowed a more favorable assessment of stock levels and a slightly better demand outlook. In addition, the business climate in the building industry worsened marginally (-0.4 point m-o-m to -5.4), as a trend in orders worsened but an assessment of them was more positive and demand expectations strengthened. Meanwhile, business confidence in trade saw the strongest improvement (+5.7 points m-o-m to -15.9), underpinned by an upward revision in employment expectations and intentions of placing orders. The business climate in business-related services (+3.0 points m-o-m to 11.4) also witnessed an uptick in April as both the assessment of activity levels and market demand expectations improved. 

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