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Financial News: Eurozone Private Sector Growth Weakest Since Early 2017

Eurozone Private Sector Growth Weakest Since Early 2017

04/05/2018 - 05:48:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Eurozone private sector activity expanded at the weakest pace since the start of 2017 as rates of growth moderated in both manufacturing and services, final data from IHS Markit showed Thursday.

The composite output index fell to 55.2 in March from 57.1 in February. The score was also below the flash estimate of 55.3.

The headline index has nonetheless signaled expansion in each of the past 57 months.

Manufacturing production rose to the lowest extent since November 2016, whereas service sector business activity increased at the weakest pace since August last year.

The services Purchasing Managers' Index came in at 54.9 in March, down from 56.2 in February and the flash 55.0.

Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit said, "The surveys are still indicative of the economy growing at an impressive 0.6 percent quarterly rate in March, down from a clearly unsustainably rapid 0.8-0.9 percent rate around the start of the year."

National PMI data indicated that the upturn remained broad-based in nature, with output expanding in all of the countries covered.

Germany's final composite PMI declined to an eight-month low of 55.1 from 57.6 a month ago. The flash reading was 55.4.

Similarly, the services PMI eased to 53.9 from 55.3 in February. The score was also below the flash 54.2.

France's private sector expanded at the slowest pace since last August. The final composite PMI dropped to 56.3 from 57.3 in February and remained marginally below the flash 56.2. The final services PMI came in at 56.9 compared to 57.4 in February and the flash 56.8.

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