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Austria's Manufacturing Activity Contracts In March

Austria's manufacturing sector shrank in March as the fallout from the coronavirus disease 2019, or covid 19, pandemic led to a reduction in demand and factory closures, data from IHS Markit showed Friday.

The headline UniCredit Bank Austria manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index fell to 45.8 in March from 50.2 in February. A score below 50 indicates contraction in the sector.

Production logged its steepest fall since May 2009 and the rate of contraction of new orders was even quicker than that of production.

Further, employment dropped to greatest extent for more than a decade in March.

Disruption to supply chains from global efforts to contain the spread of covid-19 led to a near-record increase in lead times and precautionary stockpiling among some local manufacturers.

Overall prices paid for inputs continued to fall in March, largely thanks to lower demand and the effects of the recent oil price slump. Output prices also fell at a quicker pace.

Business confidence dropped to the lowest since data collection for this series began in July 2012.

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