Euro zone manufacturing output dives as fears of recession emerge


The euro zone’s private sector shrank for a sixth month in July as manufacturing output nosedived, adding to the likelihood that the region will slump back into recession, business surveys showed yesterday.

Markit’s euro zone composite purchasing managers’ index (PMI), a combination of the services and manufacturing sectors and seen as a guide to growth, held steady at 46.4 this month, missing expectations for an uptick to 46.5.

The index has been below the 50 mark that separates growth from contraction for six months, and data collator Markit said it suggests a quarterly GDP fall of 0.6 per cent. Earlier data from Germany, Europe’s largest economy, showed its manufacturing sector contracted at its fastest pace in more than three years and that its services sector, which was expected to stagnate, also shrank. Next door in France, factory activity fell at its fastest pace since May 2009, although its services sector confounded expectations. – (Reuters)