Economy is Picking up Speed

WIFO-Konjunkturtest (Business Cycle Survey) of May 2021
Sentiment among Austrian companies continued to improve in May. After an increase of 6.2 points, the WIFO Business Climate Index was at 18.0 points (seasonally adjusted). This is the highest value since October 2018. Only in those sectors that continued to be affected by COVID-19 restriction measures the situation assessments remained sceptical. However, economic expectations in all sectors signal optimism. The economy is picking up speed.

The index of current assessments for the economy as a whole rose by 5.6 points in May (excluding seasonal fluctuations) and at 14.8 points was well above the zero line separating positive from negative assessments of the economy. In the service sectors particularly affected by the COVID-19 restrictive measures, the index also improved significantly (+7.3 points) and at 7.2 points was above the zero line for the first time since March 2020. In the construction industry, the situation index stabilised (–0.3 points) and stood at an above-average level of 40.6 points. In the manufacturing sector, the situation index gained 4.8 points signalling a clear improvement in economic momentum at 18.6 points.

The expectations of Austrian companies also improved further compared to the previous month. The index of business expectations gained 6.8 points in May and was markedly optimistic at 21.3 points. In the construction industry, the expectations index rose by 3.7 points and recorded its highest value to date at 32.4 points. In the service sectors, the expectations index gained 10.4 points and was also noticeably optimistic at 21.2 points. In the manufacturing sector, the expectations index also gained momentum (+2.1 points) and was in positive territory at 17.9 points.


Results of the WIFO-Konjunkturtest (Business Cycle Survey) of May 2021
Finalization: May 2021
Project partner Austrian Institute of Economic Research, Economic and Social Science Computing Center
Contractor project: European Commission
Specialist publication: WIFO-Konjunkturtest
Dr. Werner Hölzl
Industrial, Innovation and International Economics