Compared with January 2008, Italian industrial orders plummeted 31.3% in January 2009. It is the steepest drop since 1991, ISTAT said on March 27.
The drop is more than double the 15.4% year-on-year decrease recorded in December 2007.
January orders were down 2.1% from December.
Industry sales fell back 19.9% on the year in January, a figure also not seen since 1991. Sales were down 10.3% in December compared with December 2007.
Domestic orders fell 30.6% in the national market and 32.5%from abroad.
The sectors hardest hit by the downturn in January orders were machine building, metalworking and vehicle construction, all down between 39% and 41%.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009