The euro gained against the US dollar and British pound Thursday, as the final release of the manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) rose to an 80-month high in October.
The index, calculated and published by data experts IHS Markit, rose to 58.5 in October, up from September’s 58.1. It was marginally below the preliminary number of 58.6, however.
After losing a little ground just ahead of the release, the euro rose to around $1.164 when the data were published. It has since made further gains and by 11 BST, was at $1.165.
Against the British pound, meanwhile, the euro rose to £0.878 and by 11 BST, was trading higher at £0.881.
The final release of the October manufacturing PMI confirmed the euro area’s private manufacturing sector expanded at a faster rate than the previous month. That growth was driven by:
- Strong new orders.
- High levels of output.
- A fresh record high of job creation.
By country, Germany led the upward charge with a final October manufacturing PMI of 60.5. The Netherlands and Austria were close behind, with index gains to 60.4 and 59.4, respectively.
The index showed the euro zone economic recovery is continuing to gather pace, something that will please the European Central Bank (ECB) after its years of supportive measures to help give the previously ailing economy a much-needed boost.
The continued expansion also further justifies the central bank’s decision to begin reducing its asset purchase programme.
“Eurozone factories started the fourth quarter with increased vigour, with the sector’s growth spurt showing no sign of abating,” said IHS Markit’s chief business economist, Chris Williamson.
“October’s PMI was the highest since February 2011 and the second-highest in over 17 years. The overall performance of the manufacturing sector so far this year has been the strongest since 2000.”