According to the report from IHS Markit, January saw a welcome, albeit modest, upturn in business activity across Germany's private sector,
Flash Germany Composite Output Index - which tracks the combined change in activity across the country's manufacturing and service sectors, and is based on approximately 85% of usual monthly replies - registered 51.1 at the start of the year, up from 50.2 in December and its highest since last August. Other positive developments highlighted by the survey in January included a return to growth of new orders, a faster rate of job creation and improved business confidence towards the outlook for activity over the coming year.
Data at the sector level showed growth of services business activity accelerating to a strong rate that was the fastest for five months, alongside an easing of the rate of decline in manufacturing production to the weakest since August last year.
The headline Flash Germany Manufacturing PMI climbed to an 11 month high of 45.2 in January, up from December's 43.7. The latest reading was still firmly in contraction territory, but signalled the overall rate of decline in manufacturing easing for the third time in the past four months.
Firms' expectations towards output over the coming year improved to a 16-month high in January. While service sector sentiment showed a modest gain to reach the highest since last April, the main boost to overall business confidence came from a jump in manufacturers' expectations, which were the most positive in almost one-and-a-half years.
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