Eurozone industrial output falls sharply in Oct: Data

BRUSSELS (AFP) - Eurozone industrial output fell sharply in October, the latest sign that a very modest recovery from recession is struggling to gain traction, official data showed on Thursday.

Industrial output in the 17-nation eurozone slumped 1.1 per cent in October compared with September when it fell a revised 0.2 per cent, the Eurostat statistics agency said.

In the full 28-member European Union, industrial production dropped 0.7 per cent after a marginal gain of 0.1 per cent in September, Eurostat said.

The largest falls was in Ireland with a drop of 11.6 per cent while the biggest gain was in Lithuania, up 2.2 per cent.

EU powerhouse Germany fell 1.2 per cent after a downturn of 0.7 per cent, with France off 0.3 per cent, the same as in September.

Non-euro Britain was up 0.4 per cent after a gain of 0.9 per cent.

Compared with October 2012, eurozone industrial output, a broad measure of manufacturing activity, was up 0.2 per cent while the EU gained 0.8 per cent.

Industrial output figures can be volatile but the weakness seen in the last few months is cause for concern after the eurozone finally escaped a record 18-month recession in the second quarter with growth of 0.3 per cent.

For the third quarter, however, growth slowed to just 0.1 per cent.