Industrial output expanded a seasonally-adjusted 2.5% over the previous month in November, following October’s softer 2.3% uptick. November’s more pronounced increase reflected a surge in the production of capital goods. On the other hand, downturns were recorded in the production of non-durable consumer goods, durable consumer goods and energy, while the expansion in intermediate goods production softened.
Looking at the individual economies for which data is available, industrial output expanded in nine countries, while it dropped in eight countries. Ireland saw industrial production surge by over 50% in November. Moreover, production increased in heavyweight Germany, while it contracted in France, Italy and Spain.
On an annual basis, industrial production fell 0.6% in November, following October’s 3.5% decrease and marking the softest drop since May 2019. Lastly, annual average variation in industrial production remained unchanged at October’s minus 8.8%.
Commenting on the release, Bert Colijn, Eurozone senior economist at ING, stated:
“The industrial picture has been rather upbeat for the start of 4Q and surely helps to alleviate the GDP shock that the second wave caused compared to the first one. But the months ahead remain very uncertain as restrictions are lengthened, which could cause second round effects on manufacturing as well. Even tighter measures cannot be ruled out in the coming weeks, which may directly affect industrial production. For now though, industry has turned out to be the eurozone’s dark horse, cushioning the fourth quarter blow from the second wave substantially.”
Overall, our panelists see industrial production expanding 6.7% in 2021, which is up 0.3 percentage points from last month’s forecast. For 2022, panelists see industrial production growing 3.1%.