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Eurozone Services PMI Data Improves

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Eurozone Services PMI Data Improves

Markit Economics is this morning publishing it’s monthly round of Purchasing Managers Indices (PMI) for the Services sectors of selected European economies. First however the overall Eurozone figure has come in at 53.1, this is exactly as anticipated by the consensus estimate and higher than the 52.2 March reading.

The release of the Services PMI enables Markit Economics to compile a Composite PMI index by adding in the previously released Manufacturing PMI number. This Composite number is currently showing 54.0, unsurprisingly this is also exactly at the anticipated market consensus number, the previous months reading was 52.2.

The larger Eurozone economies have all performed well in the Services sector this month. Spain earlier this morning posted an increase to 56.0 from 54.0 the previous month, clearly beating the market estimate of 54.4.

The Italian figure is the most notable however. This has moved out of the contractionary zone evidenced by last month’s 49.5 reading to post an impressive 51.1 in April. Markets had expected this number to cross the key 50 line but only to reach 50.4.

France has also beaten the markets consensus estimate of 50.3, but with an April figure of 50.4 this represents only a modest outperformance and is a little on the disappointing side given last months 51.5 reading.

The German number is the highest of the group at 54.7, this is easily above the Eurozone average and also represents an improvement on Germany’s March figure of 53.0. Market expectations for the Eurozone’s largest economy had however been higher and a figure closer to 55.0 had been expected.

These PMI figures clearly show that the Eurozone is keeping it’s head above water and even in some cases moderately moving ahead. European Finance Ministers are meeting today in Cyprus where no doubt issues surrounding the recovery will be up for discussion. Concrete action is unlikely from this EcoFin conference, for that we will have to wait for the ECB Governing Council meeting on Thursday.

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