BRUSSELS, Feb. 22 (UPI) -- New factory orders rose in the European Union in December compared to November, the data office for the region Eurostat said Wednesday.
New orders rose 1.9 percent month-to-month in the 17-member eurozone and 1.3 percent in the 27-member European Union, the data agency said.
The range was surprising with new orders gaining by 19.4 percent in Denmark and falling 14.8 percent in Hungary.
New orders in Germany, with the region's largest economy, rose 2.3 percent. In France, with the second largest economy in Europe, orders fell 0.7 percent.
Investors are keeping an eye on debt-burdened trouble spots Greece, Italy, Spain and Portugal.
In Greece, which was granted an international loan of $172 billion this week, new orders fell 1.3 percent. In Portugal, also the recipient of international aid, new orders dropped 2.5 percent month-to-month.
New orders in Spain fell 1.2 percent. In Italy, new orders rose 8 percent, Eurostat said.