General statisticsEuropean Business Cycle Indicators – Price developments 1st Quarter 2024

The Special topic analyses the results of the European Commission’s monthly business surveys regarding managers’ selling price expectations in industry, retail trade and services.


Key issues:
  • After signs of recovery at the end of 2023, the EU and euro-area (EA) Economic Sentiment Indicators remained broadly stable over the first quarter of 2024.
  • In March 2024, the indicators were 0.3 points above (EU) and 0.2 points below (EA) their December 2023 values. Both indicators remained below their long-term average of 100, at 96.2 (EU) / 96.3 (EA) points respectively.
  • Confidence worsened in services and construction over the first quarter of 2024, while it stayed virtually unchanged in industry, retail trade and edged up among consumers.
  • Economic sentiment improved in four of the largest six EU economies, namely France (+5.0), Poland (+3.0), the Netherlands (+2.8) and Italy (+1.7). In Spain the indicator merely edged upwards (+0.8), while in Germany it decreased by 2 points from December to March.
  • The level of confidence has risen above the long-term average in France, Italy, Spain, and Poland. In the Netherlands, the indicator remained slightly short of its long-term average, while in Germany, sentiment has fallen well below its long-term average.
  • Consumers' quantitative perceptions of price developments over the past 12 months eased for the third quarter in a row. Their quantitative price expectations for the next 12 months edged down as well.


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