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PMI data points to hopes price pressures starting to ease

FRANCE DATA
  • December flash prints: Services a little higher than expected, manufacturing a bit lower; but both lower than in November.
  • Some concern regarding Omicron starting to show up, while some price pressures expected to ease soon - which would be in line with the ECB's hopes that inflation will peak at the end of this year.
  • "Higher activity levels were supported by new business wins, although a new wave of COVID-19 infections and the emergence of the Omicron variant reportedly weighed on the upturn. Meanwhile, manufacturers attributed lower output at their units to shortages of raw materials and semifinished components"
  • "The increase in overall new orders was the softest for three months amid rising COVID-19 cases across France, which some firms, particularly in the service sector, linked to weaker sales performances. Encouragingly, new manufacturing orders rose at the quickest pace for four months, but growth was still subdued in comparison to earlier in the year"
  • "Elsewhere, steep price pressures persisted in December, with input costs and output charges rising notably. However, there were signs of these steep inflation rates abating, having slowed since November. Nevertheless, rising staff costs and higher prices for raw materials continued to exert upward pressure on business expenses, which firms reportedly passed onto their clients by raising selling charges."

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