Sat, Jun 02, 2018 - Page 12 News List

Manufacturing PMI expands for 26th consecutive month

By Kuo Chia-erh  /  Staff reporter

The manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) last month expanded for a 26th consecutive month to 58.1 as the nation’s economy continued to improve at a stable pace, the Chung-Hua Institution for Economic Research (CIER, 中華經濟研究院) said yesterday.

The economic barometer gauges the health of the local manufacturing industry, with scores above 50 indicating an expansion and those below indicating a contraction.

The PMI slightly increased from April’s 58 points and all the sub-indices stayed above the 50-point threshold, the institute’s monthly report showed.

The sub-indices for the six benchmark industries in the local manufacturing sector — chemicals and biotech; electronics and optoelectronics; transportation; electricity and machinery; food and textiles; and infrastructure and raw materials — all indicated an expansion last month, CIER statistics showed.

The PMI’s major sub-indices — new orders, production, employment and inventories — all trended up last month, while supplier deliveries contracted.

The sub-index dropped to 59.2 points from 62.2 points the previous month, CIER said.

New orders climbed from April’s 56 points to 56.2 points last month, despite orders for electronic and optical devices — the two main pillars of the nation’s economy — falling by 7.4 points to 59.1 points, the report showed.

The non-manufacturing index (NMI) also remained above the 50-point threshold, although the index slid from April’s 55.6 points to 53.7 points, CIER said in a separate report.

The latest PMI and NMI readings indicate that the local economy remains on the path to stable expansion, CIER president Wu Chung-shu (吳中書) told a news conference in Taipei yesterday.

However, Wu warned that US President Donald Trump’s trade policy has caused concerns about a global trade war, which might lead to a decline in global trading volume.

That would definitely have an impact on Taiwan’s export-reliant economy, he said.

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