Manufacturing sector records record growth in December

Manufacturing sector records record growth in December

It was also lower compared to the 55.7 reading posted a year earlier.

During December, production, inventories and supplier deliveries expanded at a quicker pace, while employment, exports and new orders and sales slowed - the latter impacted by volatility in the local dollar and the building construction slowdown.

Manufacturing activity has remained above the 50 mark separating growth from contraction since June 2013 when Ireland was approaching the end of a three-year global bailout programme.

However, despite the additional resources, manufacturers' backlogs of work increased for an eighth successive month in December.

The moderate decline in headline PMI was mainly attributable to the lower inventory, while production growth remained solid despite the "unfavorable working day effect", as there were two fewer working days in December 2017 compared with previous year, said a CICC research report.

Manufacturing sector records record growth in December
Manufacturing sector records record growth in December

Meanwhile, the large food and beverages sub-sector recorded its highest monthly result since April 2016, while the non-metallic minerals sub-sector, wood and paper products and machinery and equipment all recorded their lowest index results for 2017. Analysts widely expect growth to slow further in the final three months of the year, though the full-year growth rate is still likely to exceed the government's target of "around 6.5%", which its set in March.

China's manufacturing sector is expected to continue expanding in 2018 despite the slight decline of an index, said investment bank China International Capital Corporation (CICC).

The new order index of the non-manufacturing businesses stood at 52 in December, up 0.2 points from a month ago. This was consistent with the strongest improvement in the health of the sector since December 2012.

"On the price front, input cost inflation remained sharp overall and continued to place pressure on firms' margins", it added.




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