Switzerland: PMI inches up in August but shows no signs of acceleration
September 1, 2016
In August, the manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) produced by Credit Suisse and procure.ch came in at 51.0 points, beating July’s 50.1 points. The index remains above the 50-threshold that indicates an expansion in business activity in the manufacturing sector.
Looking at the sub-indices, August’s survey reflects a mixed picture of the manufacturing sector. Overall output increased and is still in expansionary territory. The sub-index for employment improved moderately, but remains in contractionary territory, meaning that staff levels were reduced on average. The quantity of purchases as well as stocks of finished goods deteriorated notably in August, which points to an expected fall in demand. According to the press release, the quantities purchased are at the lowest level since February 2015, shortly after the EUR-CHF minimum exchange rate was abandoned by the Swiss National Bank. Credit Suisse added that, “Should this [lower demand in the future] prove correct, production, which until now has remained lively, would also slow down. Industry accordingly remains vulnerable and a further appreciation of the franc would be difficult to cope with at present.”