The latest survey of German consumer sentiment shows it to be at the highest level in fifteen months.
The GfK market research group found that lower prices and a stable labour market mean Germans are more willing to spend. GfK said: “Private consumption is proving to be a considerable support to the German economy” but did add things could change if unemployment rises. The consumer sentiment indicator, which is based on a survey of some 2,000 Germans, rose to 3.7 going into September from 3.4 a month ago: Rolf Bürkl, GfK’s Senior Research Consultant said: “What’s important in how consumers see things right now. Prices are stable and some are even falling. That’s really important with regard to purchasing decisions of purchase and it’s why household expenditure is holding up.” In Italy, consumer confidence also rose more than expected in August. It is now at its highest level since March 2007 according to the economic think tank ISAE as Italians grew more upbeat about their personal financial situation. This is the fifth month running that it has risen, suggesting Italy may soon emerge from its worst post war recession.