October marks fourth month of expansion for Eurozone firms

A MAJOR business survey released yesterday indicates that the Eurozone’s firms continued to grow at a modest pace this month, as the final quarter of 2013 begins.

According to Markit’s purchasing managers’ index (PMI), the euro area grew for the fourth month running, with a score of 51.5, narrowly above the neutral 50 level, signalling some growth.

The PMI score was down slightly from September’s 27-month high. Despite the recent improvement, the employment portion of the index is unimpressive, registering that the number of jobs is still declining.

Official statistics released by Spain yesterday confirmed that the country’s dramatically high unemployment dipped marginally in the third quarter, for the second in a row.

The rate of joblessness ran just below 26 per cent during the quarter, with 25.98 per cent of people reportedly out of work and looking. The first quarter of the year saw unemployment peak at 27.16 per cent, after nearly two years of increases.