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Consumer confidence hits 11-year high

Consumers in Switzerland are in a confident mood about spending and the general state of the Swiss economy, according to the economics ministry.

This content was published on February 10, 2000 - 10:37

Consumers in Switzerland are in a confident mood about spending and the general state of the Swiss economy, according to the economics ministry.

Figures just released show that the index of Swiss consumer confidence reached 18 points in January, its highest level since 1989, which was a good year for the Swiss economy.

The quarterly index, which is compiled from a survey among 1,100 households throughout the country, stood at eight points in October and was minus two points a year ago.

Those questioned are even more optimistic about the future of the economy, a factor not taken into account in compiling the consumer confidence index. But the households questioned pushed a separate index relating to the outlook to 37 points last month, the highest since the fourth quarter of 1972.

The economics ministry says the perception of job security is stagnating at -37 points but this is a marked improvement over the -62 figure recorded a year ago.

It adds that consumers are more confident now than three months ago about making major purchases for such items as cars, furniture and household appliances.

However, households believe that prices have increased considerably over the past few months and they expect that inflation will rise.

The Swiss Institute for Business Cycle Research at the Federal Institute for Technology in Zurich was upbeat yesterday about the economy, forecasting growth of almost two per cent for the first six months of the year.

From staff and wire reports

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