The Evolution of Confidence for European Consumers and Businesses in France, Germany and Italy
The paper examines the evolution of consumer and business confidence indexes in France, Germany and Italy since the mid-eighties, using regressions of the indexes on a set of common macroeconomic variables for each country. Comparison of the results across agents (i.e. consumers and entrepreneurs in the same country) and across countries highlights some differences in behaviour that have emerged in the last fifteen years. In particular, the paper inquires into the causes of the recent break in the relationship between the consumer and business confidence indexes.
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