2023.03.2807:52:00UTC+00French Manufacturing Confidence Weakens Slightly

French manufacturers' confidence slightly worsened in March for the first time in four months as their balance of opinion regarding the change in past and future output decreased, survey results from the statistical office Insee showed on Tuesday.

The manufacturing confidence index dropped to 104 in March from 105 in the previous month. The expected score was 103.

The sub-index measuring manufacturers' views towards past production weakened to 10 in March from 16 in February, while the overall order book balance rose somewhat to -12 from -14.

General production expectations deteriorated to a negative level in March, with the corresponding index falling to -1 from 0, and personal production expectations of manufacturers declined to 11 from a stable score of 14.

The finished-goods inventory balance also worsened at the end of the first quarter, with the corresponding index falling by 5 points to 13.

The index for the expected trend in selling prices in the next three months remained stable, though at a high level in March, and the relevant index stood at 29.

Business managers' concerns about economic conditions tightened after easing a month ago, with the corresponding index rising to 34 from 32.

The overall business confidence index that comprises the responses of business leaders from sectors, namely, manufacturing, construction, services, retail trade, and wholesale trade, also worsened slightly from 104 to 103 in March.

The climate has deteriorated a bit in most activity sectors, except in wholesale trade, the survey said.

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