A regular quarterly survey by Bulgaria’s National Statistical Institute (NSI) has found an increase in consumer confidence in April 2021. The total consumer confidence index was up by 2.7 percentage points compared with January, the NSI said on May 7.

In June 2020, the Covid-19 crisis and the State of Emergency declared in March last year sent consumer confidence in Bulgaria plummeting, according to the NSI poll at the time. Since then, the surveys showed a slow recovery in consumer confidence, which is yet to reach pre-coronavirus levels.

The NSI said that its poll had found that in April 2021, consumer confidence increased among both urban and rural residents, by 2.4 and 2.7 percentage points, respectively.

Bulgarian consumers’ opinions about changes in the financial situation of their households over the past 12 months and their expectations about the next 12 months were less favourable than three months earlier, the NSI said.

Consumers polled felt less negative about the general economic situation in Bulgaria over the past 12 months hand in their expectations for the next 12 months, compared to the previous survey, the statistics body said, without providing exact numbers.

Views about changes in consumer prices over the past 12 months were more unfavourable and the expectations for the coming 12 months were that inflation would continue to rise.

Consumers believed that in the next 12 months, unemployment in Bulgaria would go down – the balance indicator fell by 9.2 percentage points, the statistics body said.

The poll found a slight increase in expectations of urban residents about making major purchases of durable goods over the next 12 months, the NSI said.