South Africa: Manufacturing activity contracts at sharpest pace since October 2022 in July
Manufacturing production dropped 1.6% month on month in seasonally adjusted terms in July (June: +1.2% mom). July’s contraction marked the worst reading since October 2022. Looking at the details of the release, the downturn came on the back of basic iron and steel, non-ferrous metal products, metal products and machinery production contracting sharply. Additionally, petroleum, chemical products, rubber and plastic products output flatlined in July, deteriorating from the prior month’s marginal increase.
On an annual basis, manufacturing output increased 2.3% in July, which was well below June’s 5.9% expansion. Accordingly, annual average manufacturing output growth fell to 0.2% in July (June: +0.3%), signaling a worsening trend in the manufacturing sector.