Businesses are increasingly turning to contractors as activity slows in the eurozone, a report has revealed.The report from Markit, taking statistics from the latest Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) has shown that activity in the eurozone has grown at its slowest rate for over a year, with the PMI falling from 53.6 in January, to 52.7.
This stagnant growth has restricted firms hiring permanent staff and seen them increasingly hiring contractors to help them as statistics from the PMI revealed the hiring of permanent workers has been at its weakest net increase for five months.
Future growth optimism has also deteriorated, and the survey suggests future activity growth will be weak for months to come, which could have a positive effect on the further usage of contractors.
Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit, commented on the data: “Disappointing PMI survey data for February greatly increases the odds of more aggressive stimulus from the ECB in March.
“Not only did the survey indicate the weakest pace of economic growth for just over a year, but deflationary forces intensified. Economic growth is likely to slow below 0.3 per cent in the first quarter unless we see a sudden uplift in March, which, on the basis of the forward-looking components of the PMI, seems unlikely. In fact, growth looks more likely to slow further than accelerate.”