Korea PMI December 2021


Korea: Manufacturing PMI improves in December

January 3, 2022

The IHS Markit Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) rose to 51.9 in December from November's 50.9. As such, the index moved further above the 50-threshold, signaling a faster improvement in business conditions compared to the previous month.

Taking a closer look at the details, the print benefited from new orders, which grew at the fastest pace in three months despite weaker momentum compared to H1 2021. The loss of momentum was reportedly due to poor shipping container availability and reduced demand from Japan, which led to the first monthly fall in new export orders since September 2020. Meanwhile, output volumes decreased, hit by tough supply challenges and the longest delivery times since April 2020. More positively, some output constraints were also labor-related, which led firms to raise headcounts following two months of job shedding. Lastly, despite lower input inflation than the all-time high registered in November, output prices still grew sharply.

Commenting on the outlook, Joe Hayes, senior economist at IHS Markit, said:

“Given South Korea's prominence in the automotive and electronics industries, substantial improvements in global supply chains will be required before we see a meaningful acceleration in manufacturing growth.”

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect fixed investment to grow 2.8% in 2022, which is down 0.1 percentage points from last month’s forecast. Moving to 2023, the panel sees fixed investment growing 3.2%.

Author:, Junior Economist

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Korea PMI Chart

Korea PMI December 2021 0

Note: Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI). A reading above 50 indicates an improvement in operating conditions over the previous month.
Source: IHS Markit.

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