Services sector activity as reflected by PMIs from the BRIC economies is now available for August, so here are the top numbers:
- Brazil Services PMI was nowhere near the insane reading posted by the country Manufacturing PMI (see post here: https://trueeconomics.blogspot.com/2020/09/8920-bric-manufacturing-pmis.html). Services index came in at 46.0 for the period of July-August (3Q 2020 to-date), up on disastrously low 30.3 in 2Q 2020, but still well below 50.0 line of zero growth. Reading PMIs, this means that the sector activity continued to contract in 3Q 2020 so far, on top of the already sharp contraction experienced in 1Q 2020 and 2Q 2020.
- Having set no records in Manufacturing, Russia Services PMI came out with a massive and seriously surprising print to the upside in August. As the result, 3Q 2020 to-date Services PMI rose to 58.4 for the highest reading since 2Q 2009. As massive as the print is, it is pretty 'normal' for volatile Russian services data. Still, the recovery it signals is sharp, as 2Q 2020 COVID19 trough was at a misery-inducing 32.0. The implied trough-to-peak swing is jaw-dropping 26.4 points.
- China Services PMI rose in the first two months of 3Q 2020 to 54.1 from already expansionary 52.6 in 2Q 2020. Trough-to-peak COVID19 swing is now at 13.7 points, and the latest reading is the highest since 4Q 2010, when the index stood at 54.2.
- India Services sectors are still in sharp contraction. Recall: in 2Q 2020, India Services PMI crashed, smashed, collapsed, melted down, or whatever else you might call, falling from 54.1 in 1Q 2020 to 17.2 in 2Q 2020, the lowest reading for any BRIC economy in any sector at any time. So far, in 3Q 2020, the index is running at 38.0, which implies that India's services sectors continue to contract from already reduced activity in prior quarter. In the light of this super-sharp recessionary dynamic, it is impossible to reconcile Manufacturing sector PMI and Services sector PMI in this economy.
Overall, BRIC Services Activity Index - a measure I compute using a range of data inputs, including Markit's PMIs - came in 49.9 in 3Q 2020 (to-date), an improvement on 2Q 2020 reading of 40.4 and above 1Q reading of 44.9. Nonetheless, across the four largest EM economies, Services activity continues to contract for the third quarter in a row, nominally, and it is standing still statistically. In this, BRIC economies are distinct from the Global Services PMI indicator, which rose from 35.6 in 2Q 2020 to 51.3 in 3Q 2020 (to-date).
Stay tuned for BRIC Composite PMIs next.