Business activity in the eurozone accelerated more than expected this month, a business survey showed on Friday, in welcome news for policymakers at the European Central Bank who are battling to revive growth and chronically low inflation.
Eurozone finance ministers discussed ways to pursue a more growth-friendly fiscal policy mix, in a potential nudge to Germany and the Netherlands to spend more as fears of a downturn grow in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic.
The eurozone economy will slow down in 2020 for the third consecutive year, according to a Financial Times poll of economists, who forecast it will be held back by political instability, trade tensions and disruption in the auto industry.
The eurozone economy has avoided a recession, according to a Reuters poll of economists who were reasonably confident of that outcome, but their growth and inflation outlook remains very modest for the coming years.
Euro zone economic sentiment continued to worsen as expected in July on less optimistic industry, services, retail trade and construction and inflation expectations among companies as consumers decreased as well, data showed on Tuesday.
Eurozone business activity picked up a touch this month but firms were at their least optimistic in nearly five years as they worried about slowing global growth and the impact of trade wars, a survey showed.
The eurozone’s economic downturn is proving a boon for policymakers who are jostling to succeed Mario Draghi at the bloc’s central bank — offering them an opportunity to tout favored policy proposals and burnish their credentials for the job.
Eurozone economic sentiment dipped for an eighth consecutive month to a new two-year low in February as managers in industry became more downbeat about inventories, order books and production expectations.
Analysts expect the European Central Bank (ECB) to acknowledge growing risks to the eurozone economy on Thursday while sticking to its patient course, kicking off a year that could see the Frankfurt institution mostly marking time.