Monday, 23 May 2011

Flash eurozone and China PMIs fall in May

The eurozone economy accelerated in the first quarter but PMI data released today suggest that it may not escape a slowdown in the second quarter. The Wall Street Journal reports:

Growth in the euro zone's private sector eased more than expected to its weakest pace in seven months in May, led by a sharp slowdown in manufacturing, the preliminary results of a survey by financial-information firm Markit showed Monday.

The flash reading of the euro zone's composite-output index, a gauge of activity based on partial results of a survey of manufacturing and services firms, dropped to 55.4 in May from 57.8 in April. A reading above the 50 level indicates an expansion in activity...

The manufacturing-purchasing-managers' index dropped much more than expected to 54.8 in May, from 58.0 the previous month, while the euro-zone services-business-activity index fell to a five-month low of 55.4, from 56.7 in April.

Earlier, China had also reported a slight fall in its manufacturing PMI. Bloomberg reports:

A Chinese manufacturing index fell to its lowest level in 10 months, adding to signs that economic growth is cooling after the government raised interest rates and curbed lending to rein in inflation.

The preliminary purchasing managers’ index compiled by HSBC Holdings Plc and Markit Economics dropped to 51.1 in May from a final reading of 51.8 in April. A number above 50 indicates expansion.

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