LONDON — Business activity in the eurozone has grown faster than expected this month as new orders flood in at their fastest pace in over two years, surveys showed yesterday, adding to signs that the economy is healing.
The surveys suggest the region’s economic recovery was becoming more broad-based with growth in both Germany and France, the bloc’s two largest economies.
Markit’s Flash Composite Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) jumped to 52,1 from last month’s 51,5, its highest since June 2011 and beating expectations for 51,9.
The pace of growth in the bloc’s dominant services sector beat all forecasts in a Reuters poll.
“These surveys show a real underlying swell of improvement. It’s all looking very positive,” Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit, said.
Businesses in Germany, Europe’s largest economy, expanded at a faster pace than last month and in France, the bloc’s second biggest economy, activity increased — albeit marginally — for the first time in 19 months.
New business in the bloc increased again this month, which rose to 51,6 from 51,0.