European Economic Activity Worst On Record

European Economic Activity Worst On Record

almost 4 years ago1 min

Fresh survey data out on Tuesday showed economic activity in the eurozone and the UK was at its lowest level ever recorded this month. See us after class, please 👉

What does this mean?

Let’s start with the good news: the regular surveys, which ask purchasing managers how busy they’ve been each month, showed manufacturing industries were actually doing better than economists had predicted. But it’s the services sector – think airline, hospitality, and office workers – that represents over 80% of both economies. And with conferences being canceled, travel plans being abandoned, and restaurants and retailers being shut, services activity nosedived further than expected – and dragged the economy down with it ⏬

Source: The Wall Street Journal
Source: The Wall Street Journal

Why should I care?

Data on Tuesday also showed the eurozone labor market at its weakest since 2009. But unlike the US – where unemployment benefit claims jumped to a two-and-a-half-year high last week – economists reckon the region might actually avoid massive job losses 🇪🇺 See, places like Germany, France, and Italy – which in total represent almost two-thirds of the eurozone’s economic strength – have laws that ensure workers get paid even when they’re temporarily unable to work. And while European countries have largely added to these programs with even more spending, US workers are still waiting on their government to deliver their first support package.

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Investors probably weren’t shocked by Tuesday’s data: governments, central banks, and companies have been warning of what’s to come for weeks now, after all. Just bear in mind that professional investors aren’t shocked by much: they have pricey newswires, sophisticated algorithms, and analysts on side to give them an edge in responding to news and analysis that “retail” investors simply don’t have 🤔

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