Economic Tendency Survey June 2015
Consumers upbeat about the buying climate
The Economic Tendency Indicator declined for a third successive month, falling 2.7 points from 104.2 in February to 101.5 in March. There were decreases in all of the sector indicators, most notably in the manufacturing indicator, which fell 4.6 points, but all are still above the historical average. The consumer confidence indicator, meanwhile, gained 2.9 points and is now also back slightly above the historical average.
Situation stronger than normal
The confidence indicator for the manufacturing industry fell 4.6 points in March but remains more than 1 point above the historical average. All three questions included in the indicator contributed to the decrease: the assessment of current order books and assessment of current stocks of finished goods were less positive, and production plans were less optimistic.
The confidence indicator for the building and civil engineering industry dropped 3 points in March and is now 5.3 points above the historical average. Employment plans were revised down, while the assessment of current order books, which is the other question included in the indicator, improved marginally.
The confidence indicator for the retail trade dropped 1.5 points in March but is still well above the historical average. Two of the three questions included in the indicator contributed to the decrease: expected sales growth was less optimistic, and the assessment of stocks of goods was less positive, while historical sales were better than in February.
The confidence indicator for the private service sectorfell 2.1 points in March and is now 1.5 points above the historical average. All three questions included in the indicator contributed to the decrease: historical demand was lower, expectations for demand in the coming months were somewhat less optimistic, and firms' assessment of how their operations have developed was less positive.
Consumers more positive about their personal finances
The consumer confidence indicator climbed 2.9 points in March after falling in the two previous months, pushing it back above the historical average. Three of the five questions included in the indicator made a positive contribution: above all, consumers were much more positive about whether now is a good time to make major purchases, and their view of their personal finances, both now and in 12 months, also contributed positively. Expectations for the Swedish economy in 12 months remained equally pessimistic, however, and consumers’ assessment of the current state of the economy became more negative.
Economic Tendency Indicator
Building and civil engineering
Private service sectors
Note. The standardisation of the Economic Tendency Indicator means that it cannot be calculated as a weighted mean of the levels of the sector confidence indicators.
The situation is: ++ very strong, + strong, = normal, - weak, -- very weak.
The confidence indicator for the total industry is obtained by weighting the confidence indicators for building and civil engineering, manufacturing, the retail trade and the private service sector on the basis of the number of employees in the population. These weights are different to those used in the calculation of the Economic Tendency Indicator.
The confidence indicator for the private service sector has been estimated for January 1996 to November 2001 on the basis of quarterly series for a limited number of service industries.