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Economy in Brief

Italy's Consumer Confidence Lifts Spirits For Christmas
Oh Come Ye Faithful...

by Tom Moeller December 23, 2009

Confidence rose again in December for Italian consumers making the string of rises two months long. Still, the overall situation deteriorated by one point to a -57 reading in December leaving the current situation in the 68th percentile of its range.

The outlook for the overall situation also backtracked dropping by 5 points month to month. Unemployment expectations rose and now reside on the top 5% of their range.

The outlook for current savings backtracked but the outlook for future savings rose sharply in the month.

The current environment for major purchase was sharply better with its index rising to -38 from -43 and moving up to the 59th percentile of its range.

Clearly the Italian consumer still feels pressured. The rise in confidence is a good development despite backtracking in some key components.

Italy still has a long way to go to cement any notion of stability.

Italy ISAE Consumer Confidence
                   Since Jan 1992                           Rank
  Dec-09 Nov-09 Oct-09 Sep-09 Percentile Rank percentile
Consumer Confidence 113.7 112.8 111.7 113.6 60.1 76 64.3%
Last 12 months              
  OVERALL SITUATION -57 -56 -58 -58 72.0 68 68.1%
  PRICE TRENDS -41 -39 -40.5 -42 13.6 207 2.8%
Next 12months              
  OVERALL SITUATION -1 4 -2 5 60.3 109 48.8%
  PRICE TRENDS 8.5 8 7 9.5 17.3 96 54.9%
  UNEMPLOYMENT 16 15 19 17 67.6 10 95.3%
  HOUSEHOLD BUDGET 1 3 5 6 17.8 199 6.6%
HOUSEHOLD FIN SITUATION        
  Last 12 months -37 -36 -35 -33 38.8 129 39.4%
  Next12 months -3 -2 -4 -1 65.3 102 52.1%
HOUSEHOLD SAVINGS              
  Current 73 77 79 80 88.3 6 97.2%
  Future -20 -29 -30 -16 62.2 124 41.8%
MAJOR Purchases              
  Current -38 -43 -38 -40 47.3 87 59.2%
Total number of months:   213
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