Category Archives: Global economy

1/7/20: Manufacturing PMIs Q2 2020: BRIC


BRIC economies reported their June manufacturing PMIs, so we can update Q2 2020 data. Here is the chart:


Despite improving PMIs in all BRIC economies through June 2020, quarterly readings remains deeply recessionary in all BRICs except for China.

  • Brazil Manufacturing PMI averaged 40.6 in 2Q 2020 down from 1Q reading of 50.6. Brazil Manufacturing sector growth was slowing down from the start of 4Q 2019 and was showing anaemic growth (statistically, zero growth) in 1Q 2020 before COVID19 restrictions kicked in. June 2020 monthly reading rose, however, to 51.6 - signalling pretty robust growth on a monthly basis for the first time since the end of February. Some good news, but not enough to lift 2Q 2020 average above 50.0 mark.
  • Russia Manufacturing PMI remains below 50.0 in June, as it did consecutively since the end of April 2019. This marks 14 months of continued contraction, only accelerated by COVID19. Quarterly PMI for 2Q 2020 is deep under water at 39.0 - the worst reading in history, matching that of the lows of the 2009 recession in 1Q 2009. June monthly uptick to 49.4 is still leaving Russian Manufacturing index below zero growth mark of 50.0. 
  • India Manufacturing PMI rose from 30.8 in May to 47.2 in June 2020, but remains well below zero growth line. Quarterly index is now at 35.1 for 2Q 2020, which is an all-time low. 
  • China Manufacturing PMI was the only BRIC index to reach into positive growth territory in 2Q 2020, at 50.4. Statistically, this reading is indifferent from zero growth conditions in the sector, however. 
Overall, GDP-shares weighted BRIC Manufacturing index is at 45.0 in 2Q 2020, down from 49.1 in 1Q 2020. Not as bad as 4Q 2008 - 1Q 2009 readings of 43.1 and 43.7, respectively, but bad. Still, BRICs as a group managed to sustain less manufacturing decline than the Global Manufacturing index which collapsed to 43.6 in 2Q 2020 from 48.4 in 1Q 2020.

26/6/20: Longer-Term Impact of COVID19 on Growth

IMF published updated forecasts this week, and here the summary:

World Economic Outlook, June 2020, Growth Projections table

IMF has stopped doing 5 year forecasts this April, due to uncertainty induced by the COVID19 pandemic. 

Looking at the longer run effects of the pandemic, based on October 2019 (pre-Covid19 trends), and earlier growth trend before the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) puts COVID19 pandemic into historical perspective:



The differences between the above trend lines are telling. 

Globally, GFC resulted in a permanent loss of real income that amounts to a cumulative decline of ca 17 percent over 17 years (2008-2024). COVID19 is forecast to result in additional permanent loss of 3.2 percent within 5 years 2020-2024.

Eurozone has been hit even harder. GFC resulted in a permanent loss of real income to the tune of 12.8 percent while COVID19 is currently set to yield a permanent additional loss of income to the tune of 7.1 percent over less than 1/3rd of the post-GFC trend line duration. 

The numbers above are rather 'indicative', in so far as any and all forecasts past 2020 are perilous at the very best. But you get the picture: we are witnessing two consecutive events that result in permanent deviation of economic activity away from the prior trends. And both events are sharp. Even with a 'V-shaped' recovery, we are in trouble (because a V-shaped recovery taking us into mid-2020 means recovering end-of-2019 levels of economic activity, while losing 1.5-2 years of growth momentum (recall, economy was slowing down in H2 2019 on its own, without COVID19). 

As we say... [ok, well, may we do not say it often, but...] this picture is f*ugly... 


1/6/20: 3 months of COVID19 impact: BRIC Manufacturing PMIs


BRIC Manufacturing PMIs are out for May, showing some marginal improvements in the sector. However, of all four economies, China is the only one that is currently posting activity reading within the statistical range of zero--to-positive growth. Brazil, Russia and India remain deeply underwater.

Please note, these are quarterly PMIs, not monthly, based on GDP-weighted shares of manufacturing sectors and monthly PMI data points.