The global economy started Q4 2012 on a lacklustre footing. Rates of expansion in output and new orders remained well below their long-run trends, as growth at service providers was offset by the ongoing contraction at manufacturers.
The Global All-Industry Output Index — produced by JPMorgan and Markit in association with ISM and IFPSM — posted 51.3 in October, down from 52.4 in September. The headline index has signaled expansion for 39 successive months. However, following a brief spell of solid growth during the opening quarter of the year, the rate of expansion since then has remained weak overall.