Global and export demand for French manufactured goods fell in the first quarter of 2009 and it is expected to fall further in the second quarter, but in a less pronounced way, results of the latest quarterly business survey by the INSEE showed Tuesday.

The gauge for total demand fell to minus 60 in the three months to April from minus 52 recorded in the three months to January, while the measure for export demand dropped to minus 60 from minus 54.

The forward looking indicator for the second quarter stood at minus 41, up from minus 44 in the previous quarter, indicating that the pace of decline in new orders is likely to ease.

Further, business leaders surveyed noted that the fall of industrial manpower increased in the first quarter and it is expected to continue over the next three months.

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