It was a bit of a mixed start to the week for economic data from the eurozone, as the day began with some disappointing news from Germany. In November, factory orders fell by 1% month-on-month which was worse than the 0.4% decline the markets had been expecting. It is the first decline in factory orders since July 2018 and is largely because of a 3.2% decrease in foreign demand. Worryingly, on an annual basis, orders were 4% lower than they were a year ago.
Retail sales in the eurozone fared better, as they increased 0.6% in November, which was some way above the 0.1% expected. However, on a yearly basis, retail trade growth eased to 1.1% from 2.3% the previous month. In German, retail sales also came in much better than expected, increasing by 1.4% in November from 0.1% the previous period and way above the predicted 0.3%. December’s German construction PMI reading increased to 53.3 from 51.3 the previous month and is the second consecutive expansion, as well as the fastest rate of increase since May 2018. The readings helped boost the euro against sterling and the dollar.
Today is a busy one for economic data from the eurozone, beginning with the German industrial production figures for November. We will then see December’s business and consumer confidence readings from the eurozone, as well as economic and industrial sentiment for the same month.