Eurozone manufacturing outlook at 26 month high

The Eurozone manufacturing recovery continues, as data from Markit shows the currency bloc's purchasing managers' index rising from 50.3 to 51.4.

A jump to just 51.3 was expected, but growth in Germany, the Netherlands, Italy, Austria and Ireland pushed the index higher.

Howard Archer, chief UK and European economist, IHS Global Insight:

The final August Eurozone manufacturing PMI encouragingly shows widespread improvement across all countries except for France and is supportive to hopes that the single currency area is gradually establishing recovery after exiting prolonged recession in the second quarter when GDP grew 0.3% quarter-on-quarter.

Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit said:

Manufacturing in the euro area continued to show signs of recovery in August. Although gains are still only modest, companies reported the strongest improvement in business conditions for just over two years, with a pick up in new orders growth suggesting the upturn will be sustained into September.

What’s especially encouraging is that the upturn is broad-based, with PMIs rising in all countries with the exception of France, where business conditions have at least stabilised after the steep downturn reported earlier in the year. Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Spain and Italy are now all seeing manufacturing grow at the fastest rates for at least two years, and even Greece saw a marked easing in the rate of manufacturing decline.