STORY: Euro zone business growth slowed sharply in June.

A key survey showed Friday (June 21) demand fell for the first time since February.

With the bloc's services industry showing some signs of weakening, while the downturn in manufacturing also worsened.

The composite Purchasing Managers' Index - or PMI - sank to 50.8 this month from May's 52.2.

Analysts were left surprised as they had expected the number to rise.

Though the index did at least hold above the 50 level separating growth from contraction for a fourth month.

Friday's disappointing number come despite the European Central Bank delivering interest rate cuts earlier this month.

June's data also showed inflationary pressures easing, strengthening the case for further reductions this year.

The PMI for the currency union's dominant services industry fell to 52.6, below analyst forecasts.

Manufacturing activity has been in decline for almost two years, and reversed recent signs of a potential recovery.

The factory PMI dropped to a six-month low of 45.6 from 47.3.