Taiwan: Industrial production posts sharpest contraction in over seven years in March
Industrial output declined 9.9% year-on-year in March, marking the worst fall in the production index since January 2012 and the fourth consecutive month of contraction in the sector. The print also worsened markedly from the revised 2.0% decline recorded in February (previously reported: -1.8% year-on-year).Output in the manufacturing sector—which represents more than 90% of total industrial production—slumped 10.5% in March, down from the 1.9% decline registered in February. The contraction was broad-based across all types of goods but was mostly driven by a sharp drop in producer goods output. Meanwhile, investment goods production registered a modest downturn—which contrasted the strong growth recorded in past months—and consumer goods output also steeply fell after an essentially flat February reading. Moreover, production in all other industries—mining and quarrying, electricity and gas supply, and water supply—also contracted in the month.On a seasonally-adjusted month-on-month basis, industrial output contracted 4.9% in March, down from the milder 0.4% contraction logged in February. Annual average growth in industrial production meanwhile tumbled from 3.0% for the 12 months up to February to just 1.7% in the period up to March.