Graham Fahy, Reuters
Consumer sentiment improved slightly in October as consumers took some comfort from Government measures introduced in the budget to support household spending, a survey showed on Thursday.
The Credit Union Consumer Sentiment index climbed to 46.1 from 42.1 in September, recovering part of a 11.3-point decline from August. The index was previously sponsored by KBC Bank Ireland.
Despite the uptick, only 10 of the previous 320 readings in the near 27-year history of the survey were weaker than October's reading. The index was at 81.9 in January.
One of the survey's authors said recent falls in Irish petrol prices, alongside budget measures supporting household spending power, could have helped Irish consumer sentiment in October.
A slight easing in Irish inflation when many consumers were braced for ever-accelerating price pressures could also have contributed to the improvement, he added.
In September, the Government announced a budget package of €6.9 billion of permanent spending increases and tax cuts, along with €4.1 billion in one-off measures to help consumers with an inflation shock.