Modest growth for PH manufacturing PMI in March

By Kris Crismundo

April 1, 2024, 2:15 pm

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

(File photo)

MANILA – The country’s manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) recorded a modest growth in March this year at 50.9.

March's PMI was slightly lower than February's 51 but a PMI above 50 is still considered growth.

The manufacturing PMI gauges the health of the local sector, with scores above 50 signaling improvement and below the neutral score mean deterioration.

S&P Global Philippines Manufacturing PMI reported Monday that the marginal easing in the health of the local sector was mainly due to material shortages.

“The downturn came despite firms in general recording sustained demand for goods. However, if firms are able to successfully secure materials and build their stocks, the downturn in output could be fleeting,” S&P Global Market Intelligence economist Maryam Baluch said.

Philippine factories’ hiring activities supported the manufacturing PMI in the previous month.

Job generation was recorded for two consecutive months, with the highest growth rate in 1.5 years.

Factories were also rebuilding inventory levels, ending the first quarter of the year with fresh and strong expansions both in pre- and post-production stocks.

Cost pressure among manufacturers was also at its weakest since October 2020.

“Sentiment among manufacturers weakened and was the least optimistic in nearly four years. Firms were concerned that increased market competition would limit growth prospects. However, hopes of demand conditions domestically and globally strengthening continued to buoy confidence levels,” Baluch said. (PNA)