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Mideast-economy.

Consumer Confidence Levels Rise in Middle East

Consumer confidence levels have increased in most Middle Eastern countries, according to the latest consumer study by Bayt.com, a leading regional job site. The quarterly study revealed that the Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) increased by an average of 10 points in Kuwait and by an average of 9 points in each of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Qatar, the panArab daily AL HAYAT reported Tuesday. The index increased by 5.6 points in Syria, 5.1 points in Bahrain and 3.4 in Saudi Arabia. Lebanon was the only country that reported a decline in consumer confidence as the index in Lebanon decreased by 0.7 points, the report noted.

Egypt and Morocco topped North African countries in terms of improved consumer confidence, as their index rose by 7.7 and 6.7 points respectively, followed by a modest increase of 2.6 points in Algeria. The figures "reveal significant improvement in regional markets for around six months now, after the launching of plans aimed at overcoming the global [financial] crisis. The real challenge is sustaining these figures", said Amer Zureikat, Bayt.com's Regional Manager. The CCI measures consumer expectations and satisfaction levels on various economic factors including inflation, job opportunities and the cost of living.

The study also revealed that the Propensity to Consume Index (PCI) in the Middle East varied from one country to another, according to AL HAYAT. The UAE topped regional countries as its PCI index rose by 13.2 points, following a rise by 12.6 points in the previous study. The index in Kuwait and Qatar also increased by 11.1 and 9.4 points respectively. The index in Algeria decreased by 5.1 points, recording the largest fall among the countries involved in the study. The PCI index in Lebanon and Syria rose by 3 and 2.3 points respectively.
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Title Annotation:Regional Report
Publication:The Daily Middle East Reporter (Beirut, Lebanon)
Date:Oct 7, 2009
Words:316
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