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French factory activity contracts in July: Markit
[PARIS] French manufacturing activity contracted for the fifth straight month in July, a survey showed on Monday, although at a slower pace than in June.
Data compiler Markit said its final purchasing managers'index edged up to 48.6 in July from 48.3 in June, in line with an initial reading released earlier but below the 50-point line dividing expansions in activity from contractions.
"July's PMI data signalled a further modest contraction of the French manufacturing sector, amid continued fragility in incoming new orders," Markit Economist Jack Kennedy said.
"This was reflected in ongoing cost-cutting measures, with payroll numbers and raw material purchasing reduced further and inventories declining again."
The output, new orders and employment sub-indices were all higher than initially reported but failed to rise above the 50-point mark.
In a positive sign for future activity, manufacturers'backlogs of work increased for the first time in four months, with the reading rising to 51.2 from 49.1.