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miércoles, 23 de mayo de 2012

Italian consumer confidence at lowest since 1996

ROME 
Italian consumer confidence tumbled much more than expected in May to its lowest level since 1996 as residents in the euro zone's third-largest economy grew less confident about the general economic situation, national statistics institute Istat reported Wednesday
Italy's consumer confidence index fell to 86.5 in May from 88.8 in April, Istat said
An Istat official said the May figure was the lowest since the series started in January 1996
The institute downwardly revised April's reading to 88.8 from an initial estimate of 89.0. April's data had been the lowest on record
Italy's consumer confidence index had been expected to rise to 90.0 according to the average forecast of seven economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires
"May's confidence further drops from April's record low," an Istat official said. "The current and future general economic climate gets worse and pushes the survey lower."
There was also a large gain in expectations of higher unemployment, with the index climbing to 113 from 106, Istat added
Earlier in the month, Istat said Italy's unemployment rate rose to 9.8% in March, its highest level in more than a decade
Italy's economy has contracted since last summer as domestic consumption has sunk, credit conditions have tightened and only exporters have contributed to economic growth

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