Irish consumer sentiment edges up in January

Retail

Irish consumer sentiment edges up in January

Irish consumer sentiment in January has edged up thanks to post-Christmas sales and positive job news, according to the KBC Bank/ESRI consumer Sentiment Index.

Despite a backdrop of Brexit uncertainty, the index increased to 98.8 in January from 96.5 in December - the second monthly increase in the last three months, but still well below last year’s average of 102.5.

But this good news may be short lived, according to chief economist at KBC Bank Ireland, Austin Hughes, who added that February is likely to see Irish consumer confidence weaken as Christmas bills arrive and difficulties in delivering the EU withdrawal look to continue.

“As consumers continue to juggle the risk of the UK crashing out of the EU with the reality of modestly improving conditions of late, the likelihood is that sentiment and spending indicators will remain on a choppy path in early 2019,” Hughes said in the report.