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Consumers increasingly upbeat about Finnish economy

A December report shows consumer confidence beating the long-term average and even rising slightly toward the end of the year.

Joulunaluskauppaa kauppakeskus Jumbossa Vantaalla
Image: Antti Aimo-Koivisto / Lehtikuva

When researchers asked consumers in December about their outlook for the Finnish economy over the next 12 months, some 51 percent said that they believed that the situation would improve. According to Statistics Finland, just eight percent said they thought the economy would deteriorate.

The finding reflects a slight improvement over the previous month, when 47 percent said they were optimistic about the economy. At the time, eight percent also said that they felt the situation would worsen.

The state agency’s consumer barometer interviewed just under 1,200 respondents for the report. The agency found that consumers were more positive about the national economy, personal finances, and the unemployment situation.

Mortgage lender: Labour market to strengthen

Head economist Juhana Brotherus of specialised mortgage finance institution Hypo said that consumers now appear to have an exceptionally optimistic view of the economy.

"Consumer expectations seem to be sky high when it comes to next year," Brotherus said in a press statement.

The economist said that after years of weak activity, growth in the Finnish economy has been driven by a strong cyclical upswing and commendable expansion of the global economy. He predicted that labour market would also rebound next year and this would also affect consumer confidence.

Business lobby: Confidence rising in industry and construction

Meanwhile Finland’s main private sector business lobby EK said Wednesday that the business community was more positive about activity in the industrial and construction sectors.

The organisation noted that the industrial confidence index rose to +18 in December, up from +15 in November, representing the highest level since 2007. In the construction sector, the index rose to +13, compared to +10 in November.

The group said that confidence in the service and retail sectors remained at a good level in December, although they dipped slightly from the previous month.

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