Italy: PMI climbs to six-year high in March
April 5, 2017
The IHS Markit manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose from 55.0 in February to 55.7 in March and marked the highest reading in over six years. The index thus moved further above the 50-point threshold that separates expansion from contraction in the manufacturing sector.
March’s result mainly reflected faster growth in new orders and output, which expanded at the fastest rate in 15 months. The growth in new orders received was underpinned by the fastest expansion in new export orders since November 2015. This translated into higher backlogs of work and the fastest rate of job creation since November 2000. In addition, manufacturers’ optimism regarding the outlook for activity in the year ahead remained strong. Regarding price developments, input prices increased strongly, and led to the fastest rise in output charges in almost six years.
Phil Smith, Economist at IHS Markit, added that, “Supply chains were stretched further in March due to growing demand for inputs, which was reflected in the greatest deterioration in lead times for nearly six years and helped maintain strong upward pressure on prices.”