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Consumer and business confidence

Starting from January, 2021 Istat disseminates estimates obtained by the calibration estimator relating to consumer confidence survey. The reply percentage frequencies, balances and climates time series were calculated by the new calibration estimator from January, 1998. For further details see the Methodological Note on page.8.

In January 2021, the consumer confidence slackened from 101.1 to 100.7. With regard to its components, the economic climate remained virtually stable, sliping from 83.5 to 83.4, the personal climate and the future one shrunk from 107.0 to 106.5 and from 105.3 to 103.2 respectively, while the current one bettered, passing from 98.3 to 99.0. As for the business confidence climate, the index (IESI, Istat Economic Sentiment Indicator) confirmed its positive trend, bettering from 87.7 to 87.9.

The confidence index in manufacturing declined from 96.0 to 95.1. The opinions of surveyed firms on the order book current trend improved, pushing forward the related balance from -25.4 to -23.4. On the contrary, the expectations on the future production developments worsened and the balance of the variable went down from 0.4 to -2.0. Furthermore, firms indicated an increase of stock level (the balance of the variable got on from 1.3 to 3.3)

The confidence index in construction showed improvement, passing from 136.0 to 138.0. In particular, respondents upgraded their employment expectations (the balance of the variable recuperated from -3.3 to 2.5), but at the same time they worsened their assessments on the order books/construction (the relate balance declined from -17.0 to -20.2).

The market services confidence index increased from 78.4 to 82.0. In particular, all its components recovered: the balance of assessments on order books from -21.9 to -18.7, the one related to business trend from -23.0 to -21.0 and, finally, the one of expectations on order books from -11.3 to -5.3.

The retail trade confidence index lessened from 88.2 to 87.9. In details, the opinions on the current business activity gave less favourable indications, while the expectations on the future sales bettered (the related balances passed from -14.6 to -19.3 and from -0.9 to 6.6, respectively). Finally, the level of inventories increased (the related balance heightened from 13.8 to17.4). The breakdown of data by distribution channel showed that the index slipped from 90.3 to 90.5 in the large scale distribution and weakened from 82.3 to 81.9 in the small and medium scale one.