BERLIN (Reuters) – Investor morale in the euro zone improved in April to hit its highest level since November, helped by signs of an upswing in China, a survey showed on Monday.
The Sentix research group said its investor sentiment index for the euro zone rose to -0.3 from -2.2 in March. Analysts had expected a reading of -2.1.
A sub-index of expectations improved for the straight third month, reaching -4.3, its highest level since May last year. However, the current situation weakened for the eighth month in a row, slumping to 3.8, its weakest level since February 2015.
The economic situation in the euro zone remains fragile, said Sentix, but with expectations rising, the momentum of the decline is slowing.
“With the exception of the tiresome Brexit discussion, the fact that this is being achieved seems to lie less in the hands of the Europeans themselves than in the further development of the two economic heavyweights China and the USA,” said Sentix Managing Director Manfred Huebner.
The impact of credit expansion measures taken by the Chinese government were already being seen, he said, adding: “It is the conclusion of the negotiations in the trade dispute with the USA that should set further impulses.”
A separate index measuring investor morale in Germany fell to 2.1, its lowest level since August 2012. Expectations for Germany rose for the third straight month to -6.0.
A sub-index measuring current conditions fell for the sixth month to 10.5 – a development that Huebner described as worrying.
“It would be positive if Germany did not rely on China and the USA alone but sought to make its own contribution to economic stabilisation.”
Sentix surveyed 936 investors from April 4 to 8.
(Reporting by Madeline Chambers; Editing by Michelle Martin)