Italian consumer confidence bounced back in August from a 15-year low in July as oil prices fell from record highs. The Rome-based Isae Institute's index, calculated from a survey of 2,000 families, rose to 99.5 from 95.8 last month. The index, however, continues to remain at a very low level.
Oil prices have dropped 21 percent from the record $147.27 a barrel reached on July 11, and petrol prices have come down as a consequence, just as Italians embarked on their traditional summer vacations.
This is a small rebound, but it's doubtful that it signals any kind of real turnaround, the position in Germany and Spain continues to deteriorate, and things are unlikely to improve any for Italy as the eurozone sinks into recession.
Italians were less worried about inflation over the next year than they were a month ago, the Isae report said. An index measuring expectations for higher prices in coming months fell to 19 from 25 in July.
The sub component measuring concern about the current economic situation rose to minus 128 from minus 136, while the short-term outlook component rose to minus 46 from minus 55. Concern about unemployment fell to 56 from 59.
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