Eurozone sales continue year and a half decline

Eurozone purchasing managers index (PMI) data shows the currency bloc continuing to suffer from weakening retail sales in April. A figure of 44.2 implies a continuing contraction (50 is the threshold for a contraction).

Italian retail PMI fell to a four month low of 37.2 and Germany to a two month low at 49.7. Both France and the Eurozone as a whole saw a two month high, of 43.7 and 44.2 respectively.

Trevor Balchin, senior economist at Markit:

The PMI edged up from March’s ten-month low, but remained indicative of a sharp fall in retail sales. Over the past two years, sales have increased only once – in October 2011 – and even that increase was negligible.