French Business Confidence Climbs to Highest in Four Years

France's Economic Challenges

French business confidence rose to the highest level in four years as cheaper oil buoys consumer demand and a weaker euro helps exports.

An index of sentiment among French executives climbed to 100 in August, its highest reading since 2011, data from national statistics office Insee showed on Thursday. Economists forecast a reading of 99, the same level as in July, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg survey.

The increase suggests the French economy is on track for its best full-year expansion in more than three years. The finance ministry and the International Monetary Fund expect growth of about 1 percent in 2015, compared with an average of less than 0.5 percent in the previous three.

These figures “show the recovery is continuing,” Finance Minister Michel Sapin said in a statement. “The data supports the government’s growth forecast at a time when job creation is starting gradually,” he said.

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