Austria: PMI drops to an over two-year low in October
The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), compiled by Bank Austria and released by IHS Markit, dropped to an over two-year low of 53.8 in October from 55.0 in September. The headline figure moved closer to the neutral 50-point mark that separates expansion from contraction, but nonetheless indicated that business conditions continued to improve. It also remained above the long-term average of 52.3 and marked the 43rd consecutive month in which business conditions in the sector improved.
The headline figure eased on slower growth in new orders, employment and purchasing activity; and a drop in export orders. New orders grew at the slowest pace in over two years, chiefly linked to a softer automotive sector and increased price competition from other countries. Cost pressures remained elevated due to higher input prices related to oil products and steel. This in turn led to higher output prices. Lastly, business confidence fell to its lowest level since early 2015 and moderated for the eighth time in 10 months.