French business confidence stable in April

29th April 2004, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, April 29 (AFP) - A composite indicator of French business confidence was unchanged at 104 points in April compared to the previous month, a monthly survey of industrialists released Thursday showed.

PARIS, April 29 (AFP) - A composite indicator of French business confidence was unchanged at 104 points in April compared to the previous month, a monthly survey of industrialists released Thursday showed.

The survey, carried out by the statistics office Insee, reflects the level of business leaders' opinions on the overall output outlook, their own output outlook, past production, inventories and order books.

The indicator represents the balance in percentage points between those expecting an overall rise in output and those predicting a decline.General output expectations fell to minus nine points in April from plus five in March.

The indicator on industrialists' expectations on their own output stood at plus 12 in April, down from plus 15 the previous month.

The indicator on past production was plus 10 compared with plus nine a month earlier.

Economists said the confidence data suggested that the economy continued to grow steadily in the first quarter but point to some risks in the second half of the year.

"The figures suggest that the French economy maintained the pace of growth achieved last autumn through into the start of this year," said Ralph Solveen and Christoph Weil of Commerzbank.

They said they expect the French economy to grow more than 0.5 percent in the first quarter from the fourth quarter, and by two percent in 2004 as a whole.

Statistics office Insee this week revised fourth quarter growth up to 0.7 percent from 0.5 percent.


© AFP

                                           Subject: French news

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