The consumer sentiment among European consumers improved slightly in the second quarter of 2018. In June the GfK Consumer Climate for the 28 EU states reached 23.2 points, thus taking it 2.6 points above March's figure. This is its highest level since November 2007. The average propensity to buy in the EU dropped slightly, although the propensity to save also fell, making more money available for consumption.
Consumers assessed economic prospects on average in the EU as less positive than at the start of the year. The economic expectations reached 7.1 points in June. This is an obvious decline compared to the 15 points achieved in March. The level of trust in economic development diminished significantly in Germany, France and Belgium. In contrast consumers in Spain and Italy looked on domestic economic activity more favorably.
Income expectations stood their ground on the EU average, reaching 16.8 points in June. This put them 0.5 points above the March figure. In Spain, Slovenia and Greece the indicator increased significantly compared to the first quarter. Here consumers rated the future development of their salaries with more optimism.
In comparison to the first quarter the propensity to buy fell slightly to 17.6 points in June. This is 2.1 points lower than in March. While the indicator fell by double digits in Bulgaria and France, it improved in Slovenia and Spain.
Despite a slightly falling propensity to buy, the GfK Consumer Climate in Europe rose to 23.2 points in the second quarter of 2018, since the calculation of the falling propensity to save is also taken into account here.
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