By Xavier Fontdegloria
Confidence among Belgian businesses was broadly steady in January as an uptick in sentiment among manufacturing and services firms was offset by declines in trade and construction.
The business confidence index stood at minus 13.5 in January, from minus 13.6 in December, data from the National Bank of Belgium showed Wednesday. Business sentiment remains subdued compared with levels recorded in spring 2022.
Confidence improved slightly among manufacturers and services providers amid a better demand outlook, the report said. However, trade firms’ sentiment deteriorated as orders from suppliers are expected to decline sharply, while construction companies were also more pessimistic amid worsening prospects for demand.
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