Euro zone business activity slipped for the second month running in June, suggesting a modest recovery could be stalling, a closely watched survey showed today.
Markit Economics said its euro zone Composite Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) for June, a leading indicator of overall economic activity, slipped to 52.8 points from 53.5 in May.
The data showed that growth remained robust in Germany, despite weakening slightly, but that the downturn deepened in France, the country increasingly generating the most worry in the currency bloc.
Elsewhere across the region, however, growth was the strongest since August 2007 with the average PMI reading for the second quarter as a whole the highest since the second quarter of 2011.
"The June PMI rounded off the strongest quarter for three years, but a concern is that a second consecutive monthly fall in the index signals that the eurozone recovery is losing momentum," said Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit.
Activity outside the euro zone's biggest economies Germany and France "is seeing the strongest growth momentum at the moment, highlighting how the periphery is recovering," he added.
Business activity in France slumped to 48 points from 49.3 points, even lower below the 50-point line which marks the difference between expansion and shrinkage of the economy.
Germany's PMI stood well into expansion territory, but at 54.2 points, slightly lower than 56.1 points reached the previous month.