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Italy January Services Activity Expands At Slower Pace

Markit Economics reported on Wednesday that the Italy Markit / ADACI services purchasing managers' index stood at a seasonally adjusted 50.9 in January, down from 53.9 in December. A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while one below suggests contraction.

Italian service providers reported that a general rise in the number of contracts available for tender, alongside new product launches, had raised the level of new business received in January. Despite this, employment levels in the services sector were reduced again, extending the current period of job cuts to 16 months.

Input costs faced by service providers increased for the sixth month in a row, while output charges were slashed for the sixteenth month, albeit at the weakest rate since October 2008. Panelists cited intense competitive pressures as the major contributory factor for pulling back charges.

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