Economic confidence in Europe plummeted in October to its lowest level since 1993, according to a key survey released Thursday, adding to signs of a looming recession in the region.
The see-sawing stock exchanges have fuelled anxiety
The European Commission's closely-watched economic sentiment indicator (ESI) for the 15-member eurozone dropped from 87.5 in September to 80.4 October in the wake of share market chaos that has deepened the sense of economic gloom facing the currency bloc.
The release of the commission's latest survey comes just one week before the European Central Bank is expected to cut interest rates to help shore up investor and economic confidence.
Thursday's survey showed industry confidence in the euro zone slumping from minus 12 to minus 18 in October to reach its lowest in about seven years.
At the same time, consumer confidence cascaded down to its level in nearly 14 years, dropping from minus 19 to minus 24.