France: Flash Composite PMI soars to highest reading in a year and a half
December 16, 2016
The Markit Flash Composite Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) jumped from a revised 51.4 (previously reported: 51.6) in November to 52.8 in December, vastly overshooting market analysts’ expectations of a softer 51.6 increase. The increase, which marks the highest reading since June 2015, takes the indicator further above the 50-threshold that separates expansion from contraction.
December’s print reflected solid growth in the French private sector. Manufacturing and services sector output increased in the surveyed month, with the services sector expanding the fastest in over five years. New business also rose markedly, logging the fastest expansion in 18 months on the back of increased new work in manufacturing and services. To accommodate higher demand, staffing level in both sectors increased. Regarding price developments, input costs rose at the fastest pace since March 2012 while output prices dropped.
IHS Markit noted the “encouraging signs for France as the country seeks to combat a high level of unemployment.”