Eurozone growth hopes reinforced by strong survey

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Eurozone growth hopes reinforced by strong survey

Markit also reported that Germany's private sector economy ended Q3 strong, with business activity growth accelerating to the fastest in nearly six-and-a-half years.

Germany's private sector economy ended the third quarter strongly, with business activity growth accelerating to the fastest in nearly six-and-a-half years, according to flash PMI survey data from IHS Markit.

The "flash" PMI reading for September - which is based on about 85% of replies to the survey - rose to 56.7 from August's reading of 55.7.

Growth accelerated in both manufacturing and services, with manufacturing continuing to lead the expansion.

Germany's economy showed continued strength at the end of the third quarter, with a gauge of private-sector activity hitting the highest in more than six years.

Germany's private sector expanded at the fastest pace in nearly six-and-a-half years in September, a survey showed on Sept. 22, suggesting Europe's largest economy is firing on all cylinders before a federal election on Sunday.

While PMI data will embolden policymakers, as inflation is set to rise only gradually markets are overestimating how soon the European Central Bank will raise interest rates, Stephen Brown, an economist at Capital Economics, said. The IHS Markit Flash Germany Composite Output Index rose for the second month in September to 57.8, up from 55.8 in August, and its highest since April 2011.

The manufacturing index nudged up to 53.0 from 52.8, in line with expectations. The sector logged the sharpest monthly improvement in business conditions since April 2011.

France's composite PMI rose unexpectedly to a 76-month high of 57.2 in September. September's reading was above all forecasts in a Reuters poll, which had predicted a dip to 55.5.

Suggesting that the solid pace would be maintained next month, factories built up a surplus of orders at the steepest rate in the sub-index's 15-year history. The expected level was 54.8.

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