Firms optimistic about the near future

The Economic Tendency Indicator fell for a third month from 110.8 in February to 109.2 in March due to a decline in the manufacturing and consumer indicators. However, it still points to much stronger sentiment in the economy than normal, and all the sector indicators are above or well above their historical averages.

The confidence indicator for the manufacturing industry fell 3.3 points in March but remains much higher than normal. The decrease was due primarily to less optimistic production plans for the next few months.

The indicator for the building and civil engineering industry, on the other hand, gained 3.5 points as a result of even more positive order books and a substantial upward revision of recruitment plans.

The indicator for the retail trade did not change appreciably and remains slightly above the normal level. However, firms continued to report weaker historical sales growth than normal despite repeated expectations of the opposite.

The services indicator was also largely unchanged and points to a strong situation and optimistic expectations.

The consumer confidence indicator fell 1.7 points, due mainly to consumer being slightly less positive about their personal finances than in February. Their view of the Swedish economy was largely unchanged and is still in line with the historical average.

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For further information:

Maria Billstam, Head of Economic Tendency Surveys +46 8 453 59 04
Sarah Hegardt Grant, Head of Communications +46 8 453 59 11