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EU short-term business statistics

EU T&C evolution in during the 1st quarter 2018

1st Quarter 2018:

Slowdown in the textile & clothing activity

Managers' expectations improved in textiles but deteriorated in clothing


The EU textile industry continued to grow during the 1st quarter 2018, albeit at a slower pace compared to 2017.  On the contrary, the disruptive trends observed in the clothing industry softened over the period. The labour market is again posing some challenges in particular in the clothing sector. The winding down of the activity is also attributable to the decrease of T&C retail sales and to the slowdown in EU exports' growth.


2018 short-term outlook: In May, the EU industry confidence indicator¹ for the months ahead improved in textile (by +2.9 points), driven by increased confidence of the current level of orders book, production expectations and stock of finished products, while it deteriorated in the clothing industry (by -2.3 points), due to more pessimistic manager’s short-term expectations on orders book levels, production expectations and stock of finished products. Furthermore, manager’s expectations on employment and export, which are not included in the confidence indicator, improved in both sectors. 

* EU Commission’s survey: European business cycle indicators and Business Industry Survey (subsector database)

EU-28 Short-term business statistics


1st Quarter 2018/2017



Production +2.3 +0.3
Employment +0.1 -2.9
Turnover +3.6 -2.4
Retail sales -0.4
Extra-EU imports -0.5 -3.7
Extra-EU exports +2.0 +2.9
Trade deficit -6.7 -6.6
Source: Euratex on Eurostat data 



Full report: see Statistics n°03/2018, Statistics in Focus n°35

For more info contact: roberta.adinolfi(at)


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