Thursday, January 3, 2013

2/1/2013: Euro area PMIs - dire state of economy persists through December

More on PMIs trail: euro area PMI for Manufacturing, per Markit, implies that "Eurozone manufacturing ends 2012 mired in recession, as demand from domestic and export markets remains weak".


  • Final Eurozone Manufacturing PMI at 46.1 in December (flash estimate 46.3), down from 46.2 in November. Effectively, the rate of contraction continues unabated and we are in the seventh consecutive month of contracting output.
  • Downturn remains widespread, with all nations bar Ireland reporting contractions (I will update Ireland database once I am back in Dublin).
  • Cost caution leads to job losses and further scaling back of inventory holdings.
  • Downturns accelerated in Germany, Spain, Austria and Greece, but eased in France, Italy and the Netherlands. 
  • Greece remained bottom of the PMI league table, still well adrift of the next-weakest performing nations France and Spain.
  • Eurozone manufacturing production declined for the tenth successive month in December, as companies were hit by reduced inflows of both total new orders and incoming new export business.
  • However, over Q4 2012 as a whole, the average rates of decline in both output and new orders were the slowest since the opening quarter of the year.
  • The latest decline in  new export orders took the current sequence of contraction to one-and-a-half years, despite the rate of reduction easing slightly to a nine-month low.
  • Only Spain, the Netherlands and Ireland saw increases in new export orders during December, although the trend in Italy also moved closer to stabilising. In contrast, Germany, France and Greece all reported substantial declines in new export business.
  • Employment in manufacturing is now in contraction for 11 consecutive months.
  • Selling prices were unchanged, although this was nonetheless an improvement on the discounting reported in the prior six months. 
  • Input cost inflation eased and was the weakest during the current four-month sequence. 
  • Profit margins continued to shrink.

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