Spirits in Russia are picking up as both Rosstat’s business and consumer confidence surveys delivered very positive results.
The consumer confidence index, which reflects the aggregate consumer expectations of the population, in the first quarter of 2021 compared to the fourth quarter of 2020 increased by 5 percentage points (pp) and amounted to -21% – its best result in a year.
However, consumer confidence in the first quarter still remains worse than the pre-coronavirus levels, which reached a maximum of 16% in 2019 and -17% in 2018.
Rosstat's business confidence index for manufacturing for March reached its highest level since 2017 and has nearly gone in the black – something it hasn't done since May 2017, and then for only one month that year.
Business confidence improved to -0.3% from February's -1.0%. Manufacturing improved to +4.2% year on year in March, from the prior -1.7% y/y.
Business confidence was badly hurt during the pandemic when it fell to -9, its worst result in at least four years. It recovered in the summer of 2020 as restrictions were lifted, but dropped again in the autumn as the second wave of the epidemic got underway, falling to -7.3 in November. However, following the holidays business optimism has picked up dramatically as the epidemic recedes.
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