YEREVAN, March 28. /ARKA/. Eurozone economic confidence improved more than expected in March driven by markedly more confident consumers, Prime reported citing monthly data from the European Commission. The economic sentiment index rose to 102.4 from 101.2 in February, when it was expected to climb to 101.4.
Industry confidence remained broadly unchanged at -3.3 as a result of managers' brighter production expectations being canceled out by moderately deteriorating appraisals of the level of overall order books and the stocks of finished products.
The increase in services confidence by 0.9 point to 4.2 was triggered by more positive assessments of the past business situation and past demand, which contrasted with grimmer views on expected demand, survey showed.
Consumer confidence was particularly buoyant, registering the sharpest monthly increase since April 2009. The indicator moved up to -9.3 from -12.7 a month ago.
Retailers' confidence came in at -2.6 compared to -3 in February. Meanwhile, the indicator for construction fell to -28.8 from -28.5.
Another survey data showed that business confidence remained broadly unchanged in March. The business climate indicator came in at 0.39, versus 0.36 in February.
Managers' production expectations and their appraisal of past production improved, while the level of overall and export order books, as well as the stocks of finished products, were viewed more negative. -0-