Mexico: Activity in manufacturing sector slows in February
February 3, 2015
The seasonally-adjusted manufacturing indicator published by the Mexican Institute of Finance Executives (IMEF) fell from a revised 51.0 in January (previously reported: 50.9) to 50.7 in February. The result, which also undershot the 51.5 the markets had expected, brought the index closer to the 50-threshold that separates expansion from contraction in business activity in the manufacturing sector.
February’s drop reflected that new orders and production levels moderated over the previous month. Employment levels remained virtually unchanged from the reading observed in January, while supplier deliveries and inventories rose over the previous month. The U.S. manufacturing sector is also showing signs of deceleration, with the ISM manufacturing index falling from 53.5 in January to 52.9 in February, which marked the lowest print in 13 months.
Another gauge that measures Mexico’s manufacturing sector also showed moderation in February. The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) elaborated by HSBC fell from 56.6 in January to 54.4 in February, which ended the upward trend that began in August 2014. February’s drop reflected slower growth in manufacturing output and a moderation in new orders. According to HSBC, “the latest reading was the lowest since November 2014, but still signaled a solid improvement in overall business conditions.”
Author: Ricardo Aceves, Senior Economist