Chart of the week
The latest flash (1)PMI estimates show that economic activity contracted sharply in November, but not to the same extent as in April.
While the composite PMI fell 4.9 points to 45.1, the less intense lockdown conditions led manufacturing to fall much less than services. At eurozone level, the manufacturing purchasing managers’ index remained in expansion at 53.6 versus 54.8 in October, and the services index slumped to 41.3.
France appears to have fared worst with a composite PMI at 39.9 versus 52.0 for Germany. We can estimate that the composite PMI for the rest of the eurozone fell from 48.5 to 44.4.
Although PMI survey data typically provide well-founded growth estimates, this is far from the case at the moment. That said, the figures confirm the message being sent by mobility (2)data and support estimates that the economic shock will not be as severe as in the spring.
If we leave short-term economic disruption aside, the 12-month outlook is significantly brighter thanks to encouraging COVID-19 vaccine news.
(1)PMI: the Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) is an index of the prevailing direction of economic trends in the manufacturing and service sectors.
(2)Mobility data calculated from the geolocation data of smartphones.
The opinion expressed above is dated 27th November 2020 and is liable to change.
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