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UBS Consumption Indicator: Signal remains positive for private consumption

Zurich Media Releases Switzerland

The UBS Consumption Indicator rose from 1.61 to 1.66 points in January, continuing its upward trend into the new year. Consumer and retail business sentiment has recovered slightly, but remains muted.

Zurich, 24 February 2016 – January's rise in the UBS Consumption Indicator was supported by somewhat improved business sentiment in the retail sector, which nudged up to -10 index points (previous month: -12). Nevertheless, the outlook for retail remains subdued. January also saw a significant increase in new car registrations, which climbed 10% year-on-year. Declining oil prices increased real consumer income, giving a boost to consumption.

The improvement of the UBS Consumption Indicator sends a positive signal for private consumption. However, unemployment could rise in the first half of the year as a delayed response to last year's weaker GDP growth, thereby dampening private consumption. The UBS Chief Investment Office expects the job market to recover in the second half, which could lead to an increase in private consumption of 1.4% for 2016.

Sources: Seco, UBS


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