Dec. 1 (Bloomberg) -- Norwegian manufacturing contracted for the first time since March 2010 as the deepening European debt crisis hurts exports, a survey showed.
A seasonally adjusted index based on responses from purchasing managers fell to 48.6 from a revised 50.2 in October, Oslo-based Fokus Bank said today in a statement. It was forecast at 50.2, according to a Bloomberg survey of eight economists. A reading below 50 signals a contraction.
The failure of European leaders to end the debt crisis in the euro area is sapping growth in the world’s second-richest nation per capita, which sends more than 60 percent of its exports to the region. The expansion in Norway’s mainland economy, excluding oil, gas and shipping output, slowed to 0.8 percent in the third quarter from a 1.3 percent growth in the period through June.
Norway’s central bank in October postponed a series of planned rate increases into the second half of next year and Governor Oeystein Olsen has signaled he is ready to cut interest rates if global prospects worsen.
The sub-index measuring orders fell to 47.9 from 50 in October and the index for the inventory of purchased goods dropped to 49.4 from 53.1. The employment index fell to 44.7 from 47.3. The production measure rose to 51.1 from 50.4.
Norway’s PMI Index was started by Fokus Bank in 2004 in cooperation with the Association for Purchasing and Logistics. Fokus is owned by Danske Bank A/S, Denmark’s biggest lender.
--Editors: Jonas Bergman, Tasneem Brogger
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