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Irish consumer sentiment falls sharply in October on COVID-19 fears

DUBLIN, Oct 23 (Reuters) - Irish consumer sentiment dropped sharply in October to its lowest level in five months on increased concerns about the potential impact of COVID-19 restrictions on household finances and jobs, a survey found on Friday.

The KBC Bank consumer sentiment index tumbled to 52.6 in October from 60.7 in September. That compares with a pandemic low of 42.6 in April during a complete lockdown of the economy and a 2020 high of 85.5 in January before the first case.

Respondents were surveyed either side of the Oct. 13 budget, which delivered Ireland’s largest ever stimulus package and before the government followed a series of increasing COVID-19 restrictions with a stay-home order this week. (Reporting by Padraic Halpin; Editing by Jon Boyle)