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Business confidence rises 1.5% in the second quarter due to better expectations


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Business confidence rises 1.5% in the second quarter due to better expectations

13.1% of Spanish entrepreneurs plan to create jobs between April and June, the highest percentage in three years

The Harmonized Business Confidence Indicator (ICEA), whose publication corresponds to the National Institute of Statistics (INE), rose 1.5% in the second quarter, thus chaining two consecutive quarters of increases after the 0.6% advance that it experienced in the first quarter of the year.

The increase in business confidence for the April-June period is due to the improvement of the expectations indicator, since the indicator on the current situation worsened compared to the previous quarter.

Specifically, the balance of expectations (difference between the opinions of optimistic and pessimistic businessmen) stood at 9.3 points in the second quarter of this year, compared to -1.6 points in the previous quarter.

This is because the percentage of business establishments that think that the progress of their business will be favorable between April and June of this year has stood at 23.1%, which is 4.5 points more than in the previous quarter. .

On the other hand, those who think that their business will develop unfavorably in the second quarter have reduced from 20.2% in the previous quarter to 13.8%, while the proportion of businessmen who expect a "normal" evolution has increased. " of their business, from 61.2% to 63.1%.

For its part, the balance sheet (difference between favorable and unfavorable responses compared to the quarter ended) has worsened by more than five points compared to the previous quarter, going from 8.1 points in the first quarter to 3 points in the second quarter of the year. .

This decrease in the current situation indicator is the result of the decrease in business establishments that think that their business evolved favorably in the last three months and the increase in those who think that it behaved negatively.

Thus, regarding the last quarter already completed (first quarter of 2024), the ICEA shows that 20.1% of business establishments have a favorable opinion about how their business performed in those three months, compared to 17.1% of establishments that have seen an unfavorable evolution in this period and 62.8% that speak of normality.

These percentages were 24.6%, 16.5% and 58.9%, respectively, in the previous quarter.

The ICEA, which is published quarterly and is comparable at European level, is prepared from a representative sample of business establishments.


According to the INE, 14.5% of Spanish businessmen plan to increase the prices of their business in the second quarter of this year, while only 4.7% expect to lower them, the lowest percentage in a year.

Regarding workforces, 13.1% of Spanish employers plan to create jobs between April and June, the highest percentage since the first quarter of 2021, while 7.8% expect to reduce staff.

During the second quarter of this year, business confidence increased in all economic sectors, in almost all company sizes and in 14 autonomous communities.


Thus, according to Statistics data, of the five economic sectors analyzed, the greatest rebound in confidence in the second quarter was noted in transportation and hospitality, with a rebound of 4.1%. The smallest rebound occurred in commerce and construction, with an increase of 0.1%.

Regarding the size of the establishments, trust increased in four of them, especially in those with less than ten employees (2.5%), and only decreased in companies with 1,000 or more employees (-2.5%).

By community, business confidence fell in Galicia (-0.9%), Madrid (-0.7%) and Navarra (-0.1%) and rose in the rest of the regions, led by La Rioja (4.4 %), Balearic Islands (4.3%) and Cantabria (3.7%).

To prepare this indicator, the OECD, the German Ifo and, above all, the Japanese Tankan, prepared by the Central Bank of the Japanese country, are taken as a methodological reference.