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23.05.2019 16:14

Eurozone: Flash PMI signals subdued business growth amid stagnant demand

According to the preliminary estimate PMI data from IHS Markit, the pace of eurozone economic growth remained subdued in May amid stagnant demand. Jobs growth slipped to the joint-lowest since 2016 as firms scaled back expansion plans in the light of weak sales. Optimism about the future meanwhile slumped to a four-and-a-half year low and inflationary pressures moderated as competition limited sellers’ pricing power.

  • Eurozone Composite PMI recorded 51.6 in May, up only fractionally from 51.5 in April.

  • Flash Eurozone Services PMI Activity Index at 52.5 (52.8 in April). 4-month low.

  • Flash Eurozone Manufacturing PMI(3) at 47.7 (47.9 in April). 2-month low.

The weak reading puts growth in the second quarter so far on a par with the lacklustre gain seen in the first quarter and is among the lowest recorded since mid-2013. After rising to a modest five-month high in April, growth of new business waned again in May to show only the smallest of increases. New export orders fell markedly again, down for an eighth successive month, though the decline was less steep than in the prior two months. The lack of new business meant backlogs of work fell for the fifth time in the past six months, reflecting the near-absence of new business growth and indicative of spare capacity developing.

Looking ahead, companies reined-in their expectations of growth in the coming year to the lowest since October 2014. Expectations hit the lowest since 2014 in services and remained among the weakest since 2012 in manufacturing, despite lifting higher for a second month running.


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