Japan: Manufacturing PMI recedes in March
March 24, 2017
The Nikkei Flash Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) fell from February’s revised 53.3 (previously reported: 53.5) to 52.6 in March. Despite March’s drop, the index remains comfortably above the 50-threshold that separates expansion from contraction in the manufacturing sector.
March’s result reflected that new orders and output continued to expand albeit at slower rates. Job prospects steadied in the same month, while stocks of purchases fell into negative territory. Input prices receded slightly in March but were still close to a two-year high as a result of higher energy prices. Despite March’s weaker reading, Paul Smith, Senior Economist at IHS Markit highlights that, “the latest PMI data again point to a Japanese manufacturing economy expanding at a decent clip. Indeed, the data are consistent with manufacturing output expanding at an underlying trend rate of just below 2.0%.”