Contraction in the private sector’s economy accelerated in October as the BLOM PMI declined further to 45.8 points. The index remained below the neutral mark of 50, separating economic contraction from growth, for the 52nd successive month. The downturn was mainly on the back of overall deterioration in business conditions especially the fastening declines in companies’ output levels and incoming new orders. Commenting on the October 2017 PMI results, Myrna Chami, Senior Economist at BLOMINVEST Bank, said: The lack of business activity persisted during the tenth month of the year on the back of weak domestic demand and confidence levels. In reality, prospects of the Lebanese private companies remained pessimistic in October amidst the prevailing challenges. Concerns related to state finances in line with the salary scale and the accompanying tax hikes seem to have negatively affected the business environment. Structural reforms are crucial now and should be put in place as soon as possible to restore confidence and boost investment.
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