Ireland: Manufacturing PMI drops slightly in February
The AIB manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) fell to 51.2 in February from 51.4 in the month prior. As such, the reading pulled away from January’s nine-month high, but remained above the 50-threshold that indicates an improvement in manufacturing business conditions compared with the previous month.
February’s downturn mainly reflected falls in the employment and stocks of purchases indicators. However, this was partly offset by an increase in output, which rose at the fastest rate for a year, with production driven higher by a rise in new orders and coming despite Brexit- and coronavirus-related uncertainty.
On the price front, input cost inflation picked up from January’s near three-and-a-half year low, but remained subdued nonetheless. Meanwhile, output charges rose at the fastest rate in a year, hinting at improving profit margins.
Lastly, firms’ outlook for the year ahead moderated in February, dropping sharply from January’s eight-month high, as the uncertain domestic political situation weighed on manufacturers’ optimism.