Manufacturing, services industries expand in March

Monday, 17 April 2017 01:24 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The country’s manufacturing and services industry grew in March according to the Sri Lanka Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) Survey conducted by the Central Bank.

It said the Manufacturing Sector PMI recorded 66.5 in March, which is an increase of 9.4 index points compared to February 2017. 

“This indicates that the manufacturing activities continued to expand in March 2017, largely attributable to increasing orders and manufacturing activities due to New Year seasonal demand as reflected through an increase in the New Orders and Production sub-indices,” the Central Bank said. 

Stock of Purchases increased with accumulated stock and the rectification of delivery delays which was witnessed during last month. However, Suppliers’ Delivery Time indicated a decline with normalising supply arrangements, especially from China after their New Year period. The Employment sub-index also dropped slightly compared to the previous month. Overall data points to an expansion where all the sub-indices are above the neutral 50.0 threshold. The expectations for activities indicated moderation for the next three months.

The Central Bank also said the Services Sector PMI recorded 60.8 index points in March from 57.3 index points in February 2017. 

“The increase in PMI over the last month’s value indicates that economic activities in the Services sector expanded at a higher rate in March 2017 compared to the previous month,” the Central Bank said. 

The expansion in the Services sector was supported by expansions in New Businesses and Business Activity. Employment and Expectations for Activity decelerated in March compared to February 2017 while Backlogs of Work declined at a slower rate. Prices Charged, which is not taken into consideration in the PMI compilation process, increased at a moderated pace in March 2017 compared to the previous month. Future Labour Cost, as measured by Expectations for Labour Cost, increased in March 2017.