French Manufacturing Confidence Improves Marginally In February

French manufacturing confidence improved marginally in February despite continuing health crisis, the statistical office Insee said on Wednesday.

The manufacturing confidence index rose less-than-expected to 97 in February from 96 in January. The expected level was 99.

Industrialists' opinion on overall order books improved in February with the balance rising to -25 from -29. The balance of opinion on foreign order books also increased to -32 from -34.

The survey showed that industrialists were a little more optimistic about their personal production prospects, confirming the rebound following the exit from the second lockdown. The corresponding score rose to 10 from 8.

The balance on general production prospects in the French industrial sector also picked up a little, after a decline in January. The index came in at -8 versus -10 in the previous month.

Regarding employment, the opinion of industrialists remained essentially unchanged in February. The balances on expected and past change in workforce size dropped one point each to -8 and -10, respectively.

Due to the weakness in the tertiary sectors, especially services and retail trade, the overall business confidence index dropped to 90 in February from 91 a month ago.




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