The confidence of French households remained stable in August, its lowest level since August 2016, said Tuesday the National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies in a statement.

Household morale, calculated on the basis of opinion balances (differences between the proportion of positive and negative responses), was 97 points, the same level as in July and June.

It thus remains below its "long-term average", which is 100 points, recalls the public statistical agency, which reports a significant increase in fears about unemployment.

In August, the corresponding balance has gained nine points, which places it "at its highest level since November 2016," according to INSEE. The balance, however, remains below its long-term average.

Households, however, were more optimistic about the future standard of living in France, with the corresponding balance gaining three points while remaining slightly below average.

The proportion of Frenchmen judging it opportune to save has, for its part, gained four points, after three months of stability.

Household morale is an important factor in assessing the future level of consumption in France, and therefore growth, which is heavily dependent on French consumer purchases.

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