Switzerland: Manufacturing PMI increases noticeably in August on near-record output surge
September 3, 2018
The manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) produced by Credit Suisse and procure.ch leaped from 61.9 points in July to 64.8 points in August. As a result, the indicator rose further above the 50-point threshold that separates expansion from contraction in manufacturing output and the series’ long-term average.
The improvement in operating conditions in August was largely due to a surge in production growth, with the corresponding sub-index jumping nine points from July. Although the sub-index is somewhat volatile from month to month, August’s print confirms an overall solid upward trend in manufacturing production. New orders also improved markedly in the month, while stocks of inputs as well as finished goods both increased more slowly, indicating an uptick in capacity utilization in the manufacturing sector. Meanwhile, purchasing activity growth accelerated, input prices increased more slowly—albeit at a still strong pace—and delivery times continued to lengthen, though at a slower rate. Lastly, the sector continued to add jobs in August, although the pace of employment growth softened somewhat compared to July. Overall, the reading points toward a robust growth in the manufacturing sector halfway into the third quarter.
Author: Joffrey Simonet, Economist