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Financial News: Spain Service Sector Shrinks For Sixth Month

Spain Service Sector Shrinks For Sixth Month

02/03/2021 - 03:34:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Spain's service sector contracted for a sixth straight month in January and at a faster pace, amid declines in new business and jobs due to coronavirus pandemic restrictions and harsh weather. The purchasing manager's index for the services sector fell to 41.7 from 48.0 in December, survey data from IHS Markit showed on Wednesday. Economists had forecast a score of 45.3. A reading below 50 suggests contraction in the sector. New business decreased for a seventh consecutive month and at a faster pace. Export demand fell at the sharpest rate since October, marking its twenty-first month of decline. Consequently, firms cut jobs for an eleventh successive month. Cost inflation was the sharpest since June, but firms cut output charges for an eleventh month in a row due to the challenging business environment. Services firms remained confident, albeit to a lesser degree, of growth in activity over the next 12 months. "There is of course some positivity amongst firms over the medium-term, with vaccine rollouts widely viewed as being key to unlocking demand and providing the platform for rapid expansion - but only once conditions return to some form of normality," IHS Markit Economics Director Paul Smith said. The composite PMI declined to 43.2 in January from 48.7 in December and extended the current period of decline to six months.

Manufacturing output also declined at the start of the year as activity was hampered by a lack of demand relating to the pandemic and the temporary effects of Storm Filomena.

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