Vietnam: Manufacturing PMI increases further in March
April 3, 2017
The Nikkei manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) increased from 54.2 points in February to 54.6 points in March, a 22-month high. The indicator thus moved further above the 50-point threshold that separates expansion from contraction in the manufacturing sector, where it has stayed almost uninterruptedly for the last three years.
In March, production and new orders rose strongly and the heightened workload prompted manufacturers to increase their staffing levels. Client demand was fueled by a three-month high in export orders and buttressed high purchasing activity. Meanwhile, input prices increased at a multi-year high rate, but manufacturers were able to transfer the higher cost burden to their customers.
According to IHS Markit economist Andrew Harker, the outlook for Vietnam’s manufacturing industry is bright, “the positive PMI data for March completes the strongest quarter that we have seen since the survey began in early 2011. Particularly pleasing in the latest month was a near-record increase in employment as companies maintained optimism that workloads will continue to expand in the near term at least.”