Ireland: Composite PMI picks up in February
The S&P Global Composite Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose to 54.5 in February from January’s 52.0. February’s result marked the strongest reading since May 2022. As a result, the index moved further above the 50.0 no-change threshold, signaling a faster improvement in private-sector operating conditions compared to the previous month.
In February, the manufacturing PMI rose to 51.3 from 50.1 and the services PMI shot up to 58.2 from 54.1. The improvement in the manufacturing sector came as output stabilized and new orders rose for the first time in nine months. The improvement in the services sector came as output and new orders rose at a faster rate. Meanwhile, firms in both sectors continued to add to their labor forces. Business activity was likely aided by rising consumer confidence, which appeared to be boosted in February by lower-than-expected heating bills amid warm weather and falling natural gas prices. Looking at prices, across both sectors as a whole, input inflation fell to a two-year low while output inflation quickened. The overall brighter economic panorama led business sentiment to rise to its highest level since February 2022 in both sectors.