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French Consumer Sentiment Weakens Slightly

French consumer confidence weakened only slightly in March, survey results from the statistical office Insee showed Friday.

The consumer confidence index fell to 103 in March from 104 in February. The indicator was forecast to fall sharply to 92.0.

The share of households considering it is a suitable time to make major purchases decreased markedly as the corresponding index fell seven points to -16.

Households' opinion balance on their future financial situation dropped two points to -7. Meanwhile, the past financial situation balance gained two points to -13.

At the same time, the balance of opinion about the future standard of living decreased sharply to -36 from -26.

On the contrary, the share of households considering that the past standard of living in France improved as the corresponding balance gained four points to -33 in March.

The survey showed that households' fears about the unemployment trend increased sharply in early March, even before the announcement of the containment period, the Insee said.

The survey was conducted between February 28 and March 17.

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