The third quarter of 2015 saw no GDP recession anywhere across the EU, according to the European cement association, CEMBUREAU, which published its Quarterly Economic Report for the 3Q15. Moreover, recovery is accelerating in Spain and at moderate levels elsewhere.
"However, the macroeconomic picture remains uneven as recovery appears to be uncertain and conditional to many potentially hindering factors, primarily subdued domestic demand in the EU and slowdown in external demand (ie exports), despite continued EUR depreciation, due to the downturn in emerging economies," said the association. "The macroeconomic recovery in the EU continues to be disconnected from the construction cycle and appears to be driven by external factors rather than a major rebound of private investment (business and construction investment)."
The latest leading indicators for the construction sector remain mixed despite recovery being noted in many EU member states since 2H2013. The construction production index fell QoQ in the EU, France and Italy but increased in Germany and Spain at moderate rates.
Cement manufacturing indices in the 3Q15 remained around record lows across the EU, with only a negligible quarterly increase. Declines were reported in Germany and France, where indices reached a new record low. They remained more or less unchanged in Italy and Spain, around very low levels. "Industrial production improved only modestly in the EU, recorded a moderate quarterly drop in Germany, rebounded in France, and continued in its recovery in Italy and Spain (more pronounced in the latter) but still remaining at rather low levels in historical terms in all the countries observed," according to CEMBUREAU.