IOBE: Economic climate recovery in March with impetus from Industry and Services

A significant recovery was noted by the index of the Foundation for Economic and Industrial Research ( ) in March, rising to 104.4 points, from 104.9 points in February. IOBE’s economic climate index, thus, recovers from last month’s decline to the highest performance in the last 6 months. In the individual sectors there is a strong improvement in Industry, less in services, while the consumer confidence index is reinforced by October 2023. The opposite is recorded a retreat in construction and retail trade. Overall, as IOBE points out, the economic climate is proving to be volatile at this time, reflecting the fact that the Greek economy is in a positive orbit, but faces significant challenges, in the external environment and locally, which significantly affect businesses and households. The estimated aid of part of international trade appears to favour outward-looking domestic industries, as well as services sectors with internationally traded goods. However, maintaining domestic demand dynamics seems to sustain relatively positive expectations, although stocks are generally at high levels. In households, the slight de-escalation of inflation and the extended summer season of the last month seems to alleviate to a certain extent the pressures on real incomes from the high price level. However, with the winter season completed, strong mobility is expected in the markets directly or indirectly related to tourism, with positive expectations for the tourist season coming. Analytically: in industry, the negative balance of the estimates of orders and demand declined, stock estimates remained unchanged while positive forecasts for production over the coming months improved significantly. In construction, negative forecasts for a business plan were intensified, while positive employment forecasts were marginally weakened. In retail trade, estimates of current sales decline strongly, with the stock level staggering slightly, while forecasts for short-term sales decline slightly. In services, positive estimates of the current situation of the companies were slightly strengthened, those for demand kept at high positive levels, while forecasts for the short-term development of demand that improves significantly. In consumer Confidence, negative household forecasts for the country’s economic situation were slightly reduced, as were those for their own economic situation. At the same time, major market forecasts have improved significantly and the intention of saving has been strengthened.