Only in the sectors severely affected by the restrictions the economic assessments remained sceptical. Companies' economic expectations also became much more confident. However, the companies also report material bottlenecks as the most important obstacle to production.
The index of current assessments for the economy as a whole rose by 17.7 points in April (excluding seasonal fluctuations) and at 8.8 points is clearly above the zero line separating negative from positive assessments of the economy. In the service sectors, which were strongly affected by the COVID-19 restrictive measures, the index also improved significantly (+19.2 points), but still remained just below the zero line at –1.0 point. In the construction industry the situation index rose by 9.6 points and at 40.9 points is at an above-average level. In the manufacturing sector the situation index gained 17.8 points and at 14.0 points is above the zero line for the first time since March 2020.
The expectations of Austrian companies also improved significantly compared to the previous month. The business expectations index gained 13.0 points in April and is now noticeably in positive territory at 14.7 points. In the construction industry, the expectations index rose by 15.5 points and is now in the optimistic range at 28.7 points. In the service sectors, the expectations index gained 12.0 points and is also clearly above the zero line at 11.2 points. In the manufacturing sector, the expectations index also gained momentum (+13.9 points) and is now in positive territory at 15.8 points.