Confidence in the euro zone is falling along with the economic picture, and it’s doing so faster than predicted. An index of executive and consumer sentiment has fallen more than economists’ expectations as the financial gloom spreads.
Bloomberg reported Thursday that, according to the European Commission (EC) in Brussels, an index of executive and consumer sentiment in the 17-country euro area dropped to 92.8 from a revised March figure of 94.5. Economists had expected it only to fall to 94.2 from the originally reported 94.4.
“With more austerity in the pipeline and the debt crisis still unresolved, any significant pickup in economic confidence in the remainder of this year might fail to occur,” Martin van Vliet, an economist at ING Group in Amsterdam, said in the report. “This could jeopardize a return to modest positive growth later this year.”