Euro-Area Manufacturing Contracts

Purchasing managers gauge indicates decline for fifth month in a row.

European manufacturing output contracted for a fifth month in December as the region’s leaders struggled to tackle the sovereign-debt crisis.

A manufacturing gauge based on a survey of purchasing managers in the 17-nation euro region rose to 46.9 from 46.4 in November, London-based Markit Economics said today. That’s in line with an initial estimate published on Dec. 15. A reading below 50 indicates contraction.

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