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Hungarian Economic Sentiment Rises to 10-Month High in February

Hungary’s economic-sentiment index improved to a 10-month high in February as consumers became less pessimistic.

The index rose to minus 19.5 from minus 19.6 in January, the GKI research institute in Budapest said in an e-mailed statement. The consumer-confidence gauge rose to minus 40.9, the highest since August 2011, from minus 43.4 in January, while the business-confidence index fell to minus 12 from minus 11.3.

Hungary’s economy is in its second recession in four years after the euro-area crisis cut export demand, while the government raised corporate taxes and levied the highest bank tax in Europe, which curbed lending and investment. Gross domestic product will fall 0.1 percent this year after shrinking 1.7 percent in 2012, the European Commission said Feb. 22.

GKI’s indexes are calculated as a balance of positive and negative answers to questions about the outlook for the economy.

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