Biz confidence edges down in April

Monday, 5 May 2014 00:19 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Business magazine LMD reports, in its forthcoming edition, that “the unique gauge of business sentiment sheds six basis points amidst setbacks on the local and international fronts, and with seasonal volumes proving to be lower than expected.” LMD’s May issue adds: “The latest LMD-Nielsen Business Confidence Index (BCI) edged down by six basis points (from an 11-month high of 140), to 134 in April, despite the onset of the traditional festive season.” In an exclusive pre-publication release to the Daily FT, it notes that “it would seem that socio-economic factors are proving to be a sticking point in the minds of businesspeople. For instance, one survey respondent notes that ‘the country situation isn’t very good. We should not only look at the economy, but at other aspects such as the political climate, social security and so on.’” Events playing out on the foreign policy front are also causing apprehension, says LMD, quoting another corporate executive, who states: “The international community is causing problems and this isn’t very good for Sri Lanka. This will create a lot of international barriers for us in the coming months.” A spokesperson for LMD explains: “The outcome of the latest poll conducted by Nielsen for LMD, the fact that the index has fallen in a month [April] that is traditionally seen as being favourable to business means that their importance cannot be underestimated. But we note that the index has fallen in April in two of the four years since the war ended.” On the economic front, however, there’s better news. LMD’s May edition states: “The future of the local economy appears bright in the eyes of 44% of those polled, compared to only 33% in the previous month. Close to a third say the economy in general will remain as is, although 24% (versus 19% in March) feel that economic conditions ‘will get worse’ in the next 12 months. LMD’s publisher, Media Services, says that the May edition issue of the magazine will be released to leading bookstores and supermarkets on Friday 9 May.