Mexico: Manufacturing PMIs improve in March
April 5, 2021
The seasonally-adjusted manufacturing PMI produced by IHS Markit climbed from 44.2 in February to 45.6 in March, the highest reading in one year. Nevertheless, it remained well below the 50-threshold, pointing to another sharp deterioration of business conditions in the manufacturing industry. March’s rise was driven by softer contractions in output, new orders and employment.
Meanwhile, the seasonally-adjusted manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) produced by the Mexican Institute of Financial Executives (IMEF) rose from 49.7 in February to 50.7 in March, moving above the critical 50-point threshold for the first time in nearly two years, and indicating an expansion in the manufacturing sector. March’s increase was driven by faster growth in production, new orders and employment. The non-manufacturing sector also returned to expansionary territory in the month.
While the different PMIs disagree over the current strength of the manufacturing sector, both suggest dynamics are gradually improving. Moreover, the manufacturing sector should continue to gain steam later this year as the recovery abroad—particularly in the United States—gathers pace.
Author: Oliver Reynolds, Economist