The Markit Eurozone Composite PMI fell to a four month low of 46.1 in September. This was slightly higher than the flash estimate of 45.9.
However, any reading below 50 signals economic contraction and the current reading is near a 3-year low.
“The average index reading for Q3 2012 as a whole (46.3) was slightly below that recorded in Q2 (46.4) and the worst outcome since Q2 2009,” wrote Markit in their report. “Rates of contraction were broadly similar in the manufacturing and service sectors in September. The rate of decline in manufacturing output eased a five-month low, whereas the contraction in services output accelerated to its fastest since July 2009.”
Here’s a regional breakdown of the latest composite PMI readings:
“It seems inevitable that the region will have fallen back into recession in the third quarter. After falling by 0.2% in the second quarter, a steeper fall in output is likely for the third quarter,” wrote Markit’s Chris WIlliamson.