Business activity in the euro area hit a fresh six-year high in April on strong demand and increasing business prospects, new data showed on Friday.
Flash euro zone composite PMI (purchasing managers' index) came in at 56.7 in April, compared to 56.4 in March. This beat expectations of 56.3 in a Reuters poll of economists. The composite figure measures both the services sector and manufacturing. A number above 50 represents an expansion in the sectors.
The data showed activity in France has outperformed Germany's in April as businesses become more positive about their future. The figures on Friday morning showed activity growing in France at its fastest pace since May 2011. At the same time, there was a slight moderation in Germany, mainly in the services sector where its PMI (purchasing managers' index) fell from 55.6 in March to 54.7 in April.