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Eurozone Private Sector Shrinks Less Than Estimated

4/4/2012 4:15 AM ET

Eurozone private sector contracted less than previously estimated in March, a revised report from Markit Economics showed Wednesday.

The Composite Output Index, that measures activity in both manufacturing and services, fell to a three-month low of 49.1 in March, but the reading came in above the flash reading of 48.7. The score was 49.3 in February.

A PMI reading above 50 indicates expansion of the sector, while a reading below 50 suggests contraction.

The services business activity index scored 49.2 in March, up from 48.8 in February. The flash reading for March was 48.7.

"A slight easing in the rate of decline of the Eurozone service sector was insufficient to offset the first decline in manufacturing output for three months, causing the overall economy to contract again in March," said Chris Williamson, Chief Economist at Markit.

Among major Eurozone economies, France saw a renewed decline in private sector output in March, while German growth weakened and Italy and Spain contracted further.

by RTT Staff Writer

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