Belgian businesses experienced a decline in confidence in October, reaching its lowest level since June 2020. The latest data from the National Bank of Belgium revealed that the business confidence index dipped to minus 16.8 in October, compared to minus 14.4 in September.
The services sector reported a significant drop in sentiment, alongside weakening confidence in construction and trade. Within the services industry, the loss of confidence can be attributed to a more unfavorable assessment of both current and future activity levels, according to the bank.
Despite the overall decline, the manufacturing sector managed to maintain its sentiment as demand held up relatively well. However, the index for manufacturing only matched the subdued level recorded in September.
These findings align with the eurozone composite purchasing managers index, which recently hit its lowest point in almost three years. This points towards an anticipated contraction in economic activity within the bloc.
It is evident that Belgian businesses are facing challenges ahead, with sentiment at its weakest in months. However, it remains to be seen how the various sectors will navigate through these difficult times.