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Economic sentiment picks up in April

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Economic sentiment in Cyprus improved mildly in April after two months of deterioration, as the University of Cyprus Economic Sentiment Indicator (ESI-CypERC) increased by 0.8 points compared with March.

Having risen to 105.4 in January, the third highest figure during the past 12 months, the ESI retreated to 103.3 in February and 102.1 in March, rising again to 102.9 in April.

The increase in the ESI-CypERC compiled by the university’s Economics Research Centre was driven by gains in business confidence in all sectors. Consumer confidence weakened in April, owing to a deterioration in expectations.

The Services Confidence Indicator increased marginally, as a result of upward revisions in turnover expectations.

The increase in the Retail Trade Confidence Indicator was driven by improved views on the current stock levels and upward revisions in sales expectations.

The increase in the Construction Confidence Indicator was due to improved assessments of the current levels of order books and upward revisions in employment expectations.

The Industry Confidence Indicator rose markedly, as all its components improved (i.e. views on current overall order books, assessments of the stocks of finished products, and production expectations).

The Consumer Confidence Indicator declined in April, as consumers lowered their expectations about their financial situation and about the general economic conditions in the country. In April, consumers’ intentions to make major purchases over the next months remained about as weak as in March.

In April, economic uncertainty in Cyprus increased marginally, on account of higher uncertainty experienced by firms in services and retail trade.