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Eurozone Private Sector Growth Weakest Since 2016

Eurozone's private sector growth was the lowest in more than two years during November, led by Germany, though the pace of slowdown was less than what was estimated initially.

The final Eurozone Composite purchasing managers' index fell to 52.7 from October's 53.1, survey data from IHS Markit showed on Wednesday. The figure was slightly higher than the flash estimate of 52.4.

A reading above 50 suggests growth in the Eurozone private sector, which has now expanded through out the past five-and-a-half years.

Among the euro area countries, Germany's composite PMI fell to 47-month low of 52.3 in November, which was slightly better than the flash estimate of 52.2. Italy's measure was unchanged at 49.3, signaling contraction for a second successive month.

In contrast, France's composite PMI climbed to a three-month high of 54.2, which was higher than the flash estimate of 54. Spain's index rose to a five-month high of 53.9 and Ireland's measure hit a 2-month high of 56.6.

The Eurozone services PMI fell to 53.4 from 53.7 in October, which was higher than the flash estimate of 53.1. The latest reading was the lowest in over two years.

Germany's services PMI hit a six-month low of 53.3, matching its flash estimate. France's measure fell to 55.1, which was slightly better than the flash estimate of 55.

Italy's services activity rebounded with the index rising to 50.3 from 49.2 in October, which was the first contraction in nearly two-and-a-half years. Spain's measure was unchanged at a four-month high of 54.

Private sector business confidence was at the lowest level in nearly four years as political and economic uncertainties, mainly related to trade, continued to weigh on sentiment. Service sector business confidence dropped to the lowest level since August 2016.

"The final eurozone PMI for November came in higher than the flash reading but still only points to modest GDP growth of approximately 0.3 percent in the fourth quarter, suggesting the region remains stuck in a soft-patch," Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit, said.

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