Sentiment survey is a survey to measures the confidence of economic actors related to their activities, both now and in the future. Respondents may be consumers, producers, or investors.
Surveying is one way to measure their expectations and plans for the future. Sentiment indicators show how optimistic or pessimistic respondents are. The information can help to predict their future behavior in terms of consumption, savings, investment in capital assets, or portfolio allocation.
However, the survey contains some weaknesses. It only measures attitudes, not their real actions. Also, the sample may not be representative, so that it contributes to the error of inference.