Insee conjoncture

In March 2018, the French business climate, virtually stable, remains favourable; the employment climate is stable at a very high levelBusiness climate indicator and turning point indicator - March 2018

In March 2018, the business climate is virtually stable, at a high level. The composite indicator, compiled from the answers of business managers in the main sectors, has lost one point for the third consecutive month. At 109, it is still well above its long-term mean (100). The business climate has lost two points in retail trade, one point in manufacturing industry, is stable in services, has risen by one point in building construction and two points in wholesale trade. It remains well above its long-term mean in all the sectors.

Informations rapides N° 76
No 76
Principaux indicateurs
Paru le : 22/03/2018
Prochaine parution le : 22/11/2018 at 08:45 - November 2018

The French business climate is virtually stable in March

In March 2018, the business climate is virtually stable, at a high level. The composite indicator, compiled from the answers of business managers in the main sectors, has lost one point for the third consecutive month. At 109, it is still well above its long-term mean (100). The business climate has lost two points in retail trade, one point in manufacturing industry, is stable in services, has risen by one point in building construction and two points in wholesale trade. It remains well above its long-term mean in all the sectors.

The employment climate remains stable at a high level

In March 2018, the employment climate is stable. The associated composite indicator stands at 111, the same level as last month. The decrease in the balance of opinion on past workforce size in the service sector excluding temporary employment and in temporary work agencies has been offset by the rise in the balances on expected workforce size in the same sub sectors.

Revisions

Compared to their first estimate in February 2018, the composite indicators for the whole economy, services and retail trade have been raised by one point whereas the one concerning building construction has been lowered by one point. Compared to its first estimate in January 2018, the composite indicator for the wholesale trade has been raised by one point. The composite indicator for the employment climate in February 2018 has been raised by two points. Those revisions result from the integration of late answers from businesses.

Graph 1 – French business climate composite indicator

Graph 2 – French employment climate composite indicator

Table 1 – Business and employment climates

Business and employment climates
Nov. 17 Dec. 17 Jan. 18 Feb. 18 March 18
Business climates
France 111 112 111 110 109
Manufacturing 113 112 114 112 111
Building 107 109 108 106 107
Services 108 110 109 107 107
Retail trade 116 114 114 115 113
Wholesale trade 111 - 107 - 109
Employment climate
Employment 108 109 109 111 111
  • Source: INSEE, Business tendency surveys

The turning point indicator is in the area indicating an uncertain short-term economic outlook

The turning point indicator for the French economy as a whole is in the area indicating an uncertain short-term economic outlook.

Table 2 – Turning point indicators

Turning point indicators
Nov. 17 Dec. 17 Jan. 18 Feb. 18 March 18
France 0.9 0.9 0.8 –0.4 –0.1
Manufacturing 0.7 0.7 0.9 0.7 0.6
Building 0.8 0.9 0.3 –0.6 –0.1
Services 0.7 0.9 0.7 0.1 0.3
Wholesale trade 0.9 - 0.5 - 0.6
  • Source: INSEE. Business tendency surveys

Graph 3 – Turning point indicator

  • Close to +1 (resp. –1). the indicator shows a favourable business climate (resp. unfavourable). The uncertainty area is between –0.3 and +0.3.

Documentation

Abbreviated Methodology (pdf, 130 Ko)