Italy's economic indicators up amid new Covid wave
Industrial production in Italy rose above pre-pandemic levels in November 2021, while both business and consumer confidence remained high despite uncertainty tied to the latest Covid-19 wave, according to official figures.
Italy's National Statistics Institute (ISTAT) reported that improvements in data related to industrial production were pushed higher by construction, reports Xinhua news agency.
That trend was reflected in another report, also released by ISTAT, showing that construction requests grew by 2.9 per cent in the third quarter of 2021.
The size of buildings planned also increased by 15.5 per cent compared to the previous quarter, ISTAT said.
ISTAT said industrial production was 1.9 per cent higher in November than in the previous month.
For the three-month period ending in November, industrial production grew by an average of 0.6 percent per month.
Adjusted for seasonal factors, production grew in all the main categories, according to ISTAT data, including 4.6 per cent in the energy sector, 2 per cent for capital goods, 1.7 per cent for consumer goods, and 0.8 per cent for intermediate goods.
ISTAT also said that both business and consumer confidence remained at "historically high levels".
The improving indicators come despite a slowdown in tourism and service industries tied to the latest wave of the pandemic and the new Omicron variant.
Italy has set multiple new highs in coronavirus infections in recent weeks, though the country's vaccination program remains one of the most effective in the European Union and hospitalisation and mortality rates remain relatively low.