Friday, May 28, 2010

Economics 28/05/2010: Euro area leading indicators

I have not updated my forecasts for the euro zone growth in some time now, and it is on the 'to do' list. However, as predicted, euro area leading indicator from Eurocoin came in today at a disappointing 0.55% down from 0.67% a month ago and marking a second consecutive monthly decline. The indicator hit 0.79% in March 2010, marking a 3-year high.
This time around, declines in the indicator were driven by the adverse movements in the stock markets valuations. However, decline is absolutely in line with PMIs, despite the industrial production indicator showing sustained growth. Also worryingly, consumer confidence remains below waterline and is trending down again:Exports are on a tear up, rising at a faster rate in May relative to April. This might be the good news for overall growth, but it is clear that domestic investment and demand sides are still recessionary. Of course, there's a popular theory out there - in Brussels, and even here at home in Dublin - that exports will lift us out of the recession. If you think so - look no further than Japan. Japan has managed to maintain booming export activity, amidst shrinking overall economy for two decades now.

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