Eurozone Manufacturing PMI Continues to Expand In April But Declines From March

aqqLatest manufacturing data from April released this morning from Markit showed that Eurozone manufacturing continues to expand but dropped slightly from March, even with the European Central Bank’s massive monthly purchases of €60 billion in bonds through its quantitative easing program to stimulate economic growth.

Markit reported on Monday that final Eurozone Manufacturing PMI came in at 52.0 in April, down slightly from 52.2 in March, a 10 month high, with growth registering in most countries, although France and Greece remain in contraction.

Data was collected from April 13-23rd.

A reading above 50 marks expansion.

Eurozone manufacturing production has risen for 22 months in April.

Ireland and Spain were the top performers in April with readings of 55.8 and 54.2 followed by Netherlands at 54.0 and Italy at 53.8, a 12 month high.

Germany had a reading of 52.1 and Austria came in at 50.1, an 8 month high.

France and Greece lagged behind in contraction with readings of 48.0 and 46.5.

“The Eurozone manufacturing sector continued to grow in April, but the dip in the rate of expansion will serve to check recent optimism that the ECB’s quantitative easing program has brought a guaranteed ticket to recovery for the region” said Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit.

Despite the recent dip in April, Williamson noted that the manufacturing PMI remains at a level consistent with euro area GDP rising at a quarterly rate of 0.4 percent.

“Price indices have also turned higher and manufacturers are taking on staff at the fastest rate since mid-2011. Policy makers should therefore be quietly confident that the region remains on a steady recovery trend” Williamson added.

-Johnathan Schweitzer

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