Operating environment

Interim Report, 6 November 2019

The following outlook information is based on materials published by Confederation of Finnish Industries EK and Statistics Finland.

The global economic outlook this year and next remains cautious and growth is estimated to be slower than previously forecast. Trade policy tensions and the simultaneously weakening real economy are contributing to uncertainty. The probability of the global economy performing worse than expected has increased during autumn.

The upturn in the Finnish economy is estimated to be over and the outlook has weakened as a result of uncertainty in the global economy. Growth in retail sales has clearly slowed during autumn, but sales expectations for the months ahead are still fairly positive. Also, retail trade confidence in September was well above the EU average. Consumer confidence declined further in the autumn, and consumers’ view of their current and future financial situation was subdued. Confidence in the Finnish economy weakened clearly.

(Confederation of Finnish Industries EK: Business Tendency Survey, October 2019; Confidence Indicators, October 2019. Statistics Finland: Consumer Confidence 2019, October.)

The working-day-adjusted turnover of Finnish retail trade was up by 2.6 percent on the previous year’s January-September period; the volume of sales rose by 2.5 percent. In September 2019, sales grew by 3.4 percent and sales volume by 2.8 percent. (Statistics Finland: Turnover of Trade, retail trade flash estimate, September 2019)