Switzerland: PMI notches fresh seven-year high in December on weaker franc and robust global economy
January 2, 2018
In December, the manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) produced by Credit Suisse and procure.ch was broadly stable from a month earlier, inching up 0.1 points from November’s 65.1 points to 65.2 points—a more than seven-year record. December’s result was the seventh consecutive monthly increase for the index and landed well above the critical 50-point threshold that separates expansion from contraction in manufacturing output, exceeding the series’ long-term average for another month and signaling the ongoing strengthening of the manufacturing-driven economic recovery.
December’s impressive reading was primarily the result of still-brisk output and improved order books; the latter’s sub-index edged up and painted an encouraging picture for the evolution of the manufacturing sector over the next several months. In an effort to meet strong global demand, firms increased staffing levels but were still unable to shorten delivery times. Moreover, purchasing volumes were robust for another month despite higher input prices resulting from the weaker franc. In recent years, the weakening of the franc has played an outsized role—together with strong growth in export markets—in propping up the manufacturing sector and increasing its global competitiveness in key industries.