Eurostat, the European Union's statistics agency, said Friday its measure of business sentiment rose to -2.21 points in August from -2.70 points the previous month. Improvements were particularly strong for production expectations and orders booked.
The figure is still weak, however — "even when compared to the previous historical lows of 1993" — suggesting that industrial production remains subdued, Eurostat said.
The wider Economic Sentiment Indicator showed that its measure of consumer confidence also improved in August, to -22 points from -23 points in July.
For the 27-nation European Union, consumer confidence likewise improved marginally, to -20 from -21.