Nigeria: PMI softens in January; conditions continue to improve strongly
The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI)—produced by Stanbic IBTC Bank and S&P Global—came in at a five-month low of 53.5 in January, down from December’s 54.6. As such, the index moved closer to, but remained well above, the 50.0 no-change threshold, signaling a softer improvement in private-sector business conditions from the previous month.
January’s moderation chiefly reflected softer expansions in new business and activity, with the latter growing at the slowest pace in five months. Demand remained high, but customer numbers eased in January. Additionally, firms scaled up hiring efforts and onboarded staff at the strongest pace since June 2018. However, backlogs of work increased amid machinery and power supply issues.
Turning to prices, input cost inflation softened to a one-year low in January. Higher fuel and raw material prices, a weaker naira and increasing staff costs continued to drive input inflation. Consequently, output charges rose accordingly.