PARIS (Reuters) – French business morale in January remained mired at its lowest level in more than two years, according to data from the INSEE national statistics office, as anti-government protests rattle the euro zone’s second-largest economy.
INSEE said its business confidence index level for January stood at 102 points – the same level as in December which marked the weakest reading since November 2016.
INSEE’s measure of confidence in industry stood at 103 points, unchanged from December. A Reuters poll of 19 analysts had forecast a reading of 103 points.
France’s “yellow vests” protests – named after the high-visibility jackets all French motorists are required to carry in their vehicles – have hit the country’s economy due to vandalism in shopping areas and disruption to tourism and transport networks.
(Reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta; editing by Jason Neely)