European manufacturing PMI hit its lowest level since 2012 in March, as output and new orders dipped as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.
Manufacturing PMI registered 44.5 last month, down from 49.2 in February, revised lower from a preliminary of 44.8.
Output, new orders and exports all dropped at the fastest pace since the spring of 2009 due to Covid-19-related shutdowns.
“Manufacturers also cut their employment levels over the month, with the net reduction in staffing numbers the sharpest recorded by the survey in over a decade. Job losses were especially acute in Austria, Germany and Ireland,” IHS Markit said.
Last week, the preliminary Composite PMI, including both manufacturing and services sectors, fell to 31.4, the lowest level since it the index’s creation in 1998, from February’s 51.6.
As of 08:25 GMT, the
euro widened its losses versus the US dollar as it traded at 1.0933, set for
its third consecutive daily decline.