New Zealand’s manufacturing sector continued to show stable growth in activity for July, according to the latest BNZ – BusinessNZ Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI).
The seasonally adjusted PMI for July was 55.8 (a PMI reading above 50.0 indicates that manufacturing is generally expanding; below 50.0 that it is declining). Although this was 1.8 points lower than June, it still represented healthy growth. The sector remains solidly in expansion in almost all months since October 2012.
BusinessNZ’s executive director for manufacturing Catherine Beard said that while both production and new orders came back slightly from strong activity levels, employment has been a slow and steady burner in terms of activity.
“Expansion for employment reached 54.6 in July, which was the fifth consecutive monthly increase in activity. It was also the highest level of activity for this sub-index since October 2014”.
“Despite the slight dip in overall expansion, the proportion of positive comments increased slightly from 62.8% in June to 63.8% in July. A number of comments were centered on business as usual, with continued growth in customer orders.”
BNZ Senior Economist, Craig Ebert, said “The only weak looking constituent of July’s PMI was around the stocks of finished products. Yet it’s hard to see this as a genuine negative. Not with new orders, as a demand indicator, still relatively strong at a seasonally adjusted 58.1”.