Economic Tendency Survey September 2022

Confidence down across business sector, record-low among consumers

The Economic Tendency Indicator fell 6.4 points in September to 90.8. All sectors contributed to the decline, the retail and consumer indicators sinking furthest to 81.7 and 49.7 respectively.

The consumer confidence indicator fell further to a new record low. All questions included in the indicator contributed to the decline, in particular how consumers view the outlook for their personal finances over the coming year. In an international comparison, the drop in the consumer confidence indicator during 2022 is relatively equivalent in Sweden and other EU countries.

The confidence indicator for the manufacturing industry dropped 5.7 points to 110.0 and has now fallen for four months in a row. Two closely related industries that moved in different directions in September were pulp and paper, the former climbing 6.8 points to 117.5, and the latter plummeting 18.4 points to 91.9.

The confidence indicator for the building and civil engineering industry fell 1.9 points to 105.7 as a result of firms revising down their employment plans.

The confidence indicator for the retail trade tumbled 9.6 points to 81.7 to show a much weaker situation than normal, the only business sector indicator to do so. This is a result of low expectations for sales in the coming months, but sales in recent months also contributed to the decline.

The confidence indicator for the service sector deteriorated as well and points to a weaker situation than normal. Firms’ employment plans nevertheless remain more optimistic than normal, which is particularly clear in the hotel industry.