Consumer sentiment in January recovered much of the loss it suffered in December in the face of a surge in the highly contagious Omicron variant, a survey showed today, with a further improvement expected next month.
The KBC Bank Ireland consumer sentiment index climbed to 81.9 in January from 74.9 in December, falling short of the 83.1 registered in November.
But the survey was completed on January 15, a week before the Government surprised many by dropping most Covid-19 restrictions overnight, opening the way for the hospitality and events industries to operate normally.
This suggests "scope for a marked further improvement in Irish consumer confidence in February," said KBC Ireland chief economist Austin Hughes.
While there are reasons to expect strong growth in consumer spending in the coming year, Mr Hughes said the relatively guarded tone of the survey indicated a "frenzied consumer boom" was unlikely.