PH factories grow for 4 consecutive months

By Kris Crismundo

June 1, 2022, 11:54 am

<p><em>(Contributed photo)</em></p>

(Contributed photo)

MANILA – The performance of the country's manufacturing sector continued to improve in May, posting four months of consecutive growth.

The S&P Global Philippines Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) reported Wednesday that the domestic sector posted a score of 54.1 last month.

However, manufacturing PMI slightly eased from its 54.3 index in April.

Scores above 50 translate to an improvement in the sector, while below the neutral score reflects deterioration.

"The latest survey data signaled a further expansion across the Philippines manufacturing sector. Growth remained strong despite output and new orders increasing at slightly softer rates,” S&P Global Market Intelligence economist Maryam Baluch said.

The report added that output volume and intake of new orders grew at a solid pace, but the growth was slowed down by the contraction in foreign demands, mainly due to lockdowns in China brought by the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19).

On the other hand, for the first time since February 2020, factories recorded an increase in their workforce.

“At the same time, while rates of inflation slowed, both average cost burdens and output charges rose markedly during May. Exacerbating increases in expenses, May data also signaled a further deterioration in vendor performance, as lead times lengthened to a greater extent than in April," the report added.

Baluch said firms continue to be optimistic for the next 12 months, but remain cautious amid the geopolitical conflicts across the world affecting global supply and demand for goods.

“(T)he downside risks to the sector come in the form of persistent inflationary pressures and supply chain disruptions, which have been further exacerbated by the war in Ukraine and China's zero-Covid policy,” she added. (PNA)