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Investor Confidence in Euro region Unexpectedly Declines: Sentix

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Investor Confidence in Euro region Unexpectedly Declines: Sentix

Investor confidence in the euro region unexpectedly fell in December, according to a monthly survey by market research firm Sentix GmbH. The confidence index was 8.0 in December, down from a two-and-a-half year high of 9.3. A median estimate of analysts called for a reading of 10.4.

The Sentix investor confidence indicator captures institutional investor sentiment toward the euro area. The December survey gauged the opinion of 896 investors about current conditions and future expectations. A reading above 0.0 indicates optimism, whereas a reading below that threshold indicates pessimism.

The unexpected decline in confidence suggests investors still have underlying concerns about the region’s economy, which only recently escaped the immediate threat of deflation. Confidence in the current climate weakened from the previous month, but remained significantly higher than five months ago. Perceptions of future economic conditions reached their highest level since April 2006, helping to keep the indicator in positive territory for the fourth consecutive month.

“Investors started 2013 with high expectations and they leave it with even higher expectations,” according to an official statement from Sentix.

Separately, a report from Greece’s statistics department said the Hellenic nation’s GDP shrank 3 percent in the third quarter, in-line with a previous flash estimate. Greek lawmakers have boldly predicted their nation’s economy will expand for the first time in six years in 2014.

Portugal’s economy contracted at an annual rate of 1 percent in the third quarter, in-line with initial estimates, the nation’s statistics department revealed Monday.

Contraction has eased in both Greece and Portugal—a sign Europe’s southern economies are rebounding from rock-bottom. The 17-nation currency bloc recently emerged from the longest recession in its history, expanding 0.3 percent in the second quarter. The Eurozone economy is expects to contract 0.4 percent this year before returning to growth in 2014.

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