Japan: Decline in manufacturing PMI continues in March
March 24, 2015
The Markit/JMMA Flash Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) declined from the revised 51.6 in February (previously reported: 51.5) to 50.4 in March. As a result, the index now sits at the lowest level in 10 months and its gradually approaching to the 50-threshold that separates expansion from contraction in the manufacturing sector.
The deterioration reflected slower rates of expansion in orders and employment. Moreover, new orders dipped into the red in March. Markit/JMMA analysts stated that, “March data highlighted a weaker improvement in operating conditions in the Japanese manufacturing sector. New orders contracted slightly, while production growth slowed to a moderate pace. Subsequently, employment growth eased to the weakest pace in the current sequence of expansion, while buying activity declined for the first time since May 2014, albeit at a fractional rate. Meanwhile, new orders from abroad increased, with a favourable yen/dollar rate helping to improve price competitiveness.”