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France factory sector unexpectedly revs up in August

France factory sector unexpectedly revs up in August

PARIS: The rate of expansion in France’s manufacturing sector perked up in August to the swiftest pace in more than six years, helping to offset a slight growth slowdown in the country’s services sector, according to a closely watched survey released on Wednesday.

Markit’s France purchasing managers’ index rose to 55.8 from 54.9 in July. That exceeded economists’ expectations of 54.5. The services index slipped to a seven-month low of 55.5 from 56, leaving the overall composite at 55.6. “The latest data paint another positive picture of the French private sector economy, with further strong expansions in both new business and output. The data are particularly promising for the manufacturing sector,” said Alex Gill, an economist at IHS Markit.