Business tendency, Slovenia, January 2021
Improved confidence in construction, manufacturing and services
In January 2021, the confidence indicator in construction, manufacturing and services went up, while in retail trade it went down. Enterprises stated that uncertain economic conditions, bad weather conditions and the coronavirus were the main factors limiting their activities.
Manufacturing confidence indicator higher
In January 2021, the manufacturing confidence indicator was 4 percentage points (p.p.) higher than in December 2020. Compared to January 2020, it was higher by 6 p. p., and by 5 p.p. above the long-term average.
Among the components of the manufacturing confidence indicator, all three indicators improved: expected production, order books and stocks of finished products. Other indicators also improved, except the production (3 p.p. lower), assured production (0.1 p.p. lower) and expected demand (same as in the previous month).
Uncertain economic conditions the main limiting factor of production
In January 2021, the current capacity indicator was 82.2%, 0.8 p.p. lower than in October 2020. All quarterly indicators deteriorated, except the competitive position on the EU markets indicator, which improved by 3 p.p. Other assessments of the competitive position deteriorated, namely the assessment of the competitive position on the non-EU markets by 4 p.p. and on the domestic market by 2 p.p. After a large increase in the new orders indicator in October 2020, in January 2021 the indicator decreased by 2 p.p. Uncertain economic conditions are still the main factor limiting production (stated by 44% of enterprises), followed by insufficient domestic and foreign demand (34% and 30% of enterprises, respectively). 21% of enterprises stated that business is limited by the coronavirus.
Retail trade confidence indicator lower
In January 2021, the retail trade confidence indicator was 15 p.p. lower than in December 2020, 38 p.p. below the long-term average and 41 p.p. lower than in January 2020.
Among the components of the retail trade confidence indicator, the volume of stocks indicator (35 p.p. lower) had the greatest impact. Most other indicators also deteriorated, but the most significant improvement was shown by the sales price indicator (by 38 p.p.).
Half of the enterprises in retail trade reported the coronavirus as the main limiting factor in their activity, followed by competition in own sector (stated by 41% of enterprises or 9 p.p. fewer than in the previous quarter), low demand (29% of enterprises or 3 p.p. fewer) and high labour costs (28% or 2 p.p. fewer).
Construction confidence indicator higher
In January 2021, the construction confidence indicator was 2 p.p. higher than in December 2020 and 4 p.p. lower than in January 2020. It was, however, 14 p.p. above the long-term average.
Due to more total orders, the confidence indicator was higher, but the expected employment indicator had no impact as it was the same as last month. The following indicators also grew: employment, expected orders, and (slightly) current and expected prices.
Most construction enterprises stated bad weather conditions as the main limiting factor in their activities (stated by 40% of enterprises or 21 p.p. more than in the previous quarter). This was followed by strong competition in own sector (26% or 6 p.p. fewer), the coronavirus (25% or 10 p.p. more) and insufficient demand (23% or the same as in the previous quarter).
Services confidence indicator higher
In January 2021, the services confidence indicator was 4 p.p. higher than in December 2020. Compared to January 2020, it was 26 p.p. lower and 18 p.p. below the long-term average.
The confidence indicator increased due to higher values of all three indicators: expected demand, demand and business situation. The other indicators remained almost the same as in December 2020.
Also in service enterprises the factor limiting activities the most was the coronavirus (38% of enterprises or 3 p.p. more than in the previous quarter), followed by insufficient demand (34% or 1 p.p. fewer). However, 26% of enterprises stated that there were no limits in their activity (which is only 1 p.p. fewer).