Manufacturing activity in the 15 countries sharing the euro pulled back faster than expected in November, according to a widely watched survey released on Dec. 1.
The eurozone's purchasing managers' index (PMI) for the manufacturing sector, compiled by data and research group Markit, slipped to 35.6 points in November from 41.1 points in October.
"Eurozone manufacturing activity has fallen off a cliff," said economist Howard Archer at consultants IHS Global Insight.
"Completing the worrying picture, the extreme weakness in manufacturing activity in November was widespread across the eurozone, with all countries seeing record contraction in activity, including Germany, France, Italy and, especially, Spain."
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008