Category Archives: Brazil PMI

2/3/16: China Manufacturing PMI: February

Chinese Manufacturing PMI for February signalled worsening operating conditions in the sector and marked 12th consecutive month of recessionary readings, reaching 48.0 in February, down from 48.4 in January and down from 50.7 in February 2015.

Per Markit: “Operating conditions faced by Chinese goods producers continued to deteriorate in February. Output and total new orders both declined at slightly faster rates than at the start of 2016, which in turn contributed to the quickest reduction in staffing levels since January 2009. Lower production was a key factor leading to the steepest fall in stocks of finished goods in nearly four-and-a-half years during February. At the same time, lower intakes of new work enabled firms to marginally reduce their level of work-in-hand for the first time in ten months. Prices data indicated weaker deflationary pressures, with both selling prices and input costs
declining at modest rates.”

On a 3mo MA basis, 3mo average through February stood at 48.2 - second lowest in the BRICs, up marginally on 48.0 3mo average through November 2015, but down on 50.0 3mo average through February 2015.

It is simply impossible to imagine how this data can be consistent with 6.9 percent growth recorded in 2015 or with over 6% growth being penciled for 1Q 2016.

As shown above, China is now a consistent under-performer in the BRIC group since July 2015 with its Manufacturing PMI reading below that of Russia (in a recession) and above Brazil (in a deep recession).

2/3/16: Russia Manufacturing PMI: February

Russian Manufacturing PMI for February produced another disappointment, falling from a marginally contractionary reading of 49.8 to somewhat faster contraction-signalling 49.3.

Per Markit, “Russian manufacturers reported a further deterioration in operating conditions during February, the third in as many months. Job cuts
were evident amid a sharp fall in backlogs of work. However, production remained broadly unchanged as a slight rise in new orders was reported. Meanwhile, price pressures remained evident, as both output charges and input costs rose.” So firms effectively were reducing their backlogs of orders, with work-in-hand reductions continuing now every month since March 2013.

On a slightly positive note, per Markit: “Russian goods producers recorded a slight expansion in new business volumes during February. According to anecdotal evidence, a higher volume of new work reflected the development of new products. However, the rise in new orders was driven by the domestic market, as new export orders declined further. The rate of contraction accelerated to the sharpest in 19 months and was marked overall.”

On a 3mo MA basis, 3mo average through February 2016 stood at 49.3, which is lower than the 3mo average through November 2015 (49.8), but still better than the 3mo average through February 2015 (48.7).

So the key reading from this data is that Manufacturing remains in a shallow downturn for the third month in a row, signalling a poor start to 2016 and leaving no doubt that the economy is now set to post another quarter of negative growth, unless there is a major improvement in Services sector readings in February and a major gain across both sectors in March.

4/2/16: BRIC Composite PMIs: January

In two recent posts, I covered

Now, let’s take a look at the Composite PMIs.

As noted in a more in-depth analysis, here:, Russia’s Composite Output Index remained in contraction territory in January, posting a reading of 48.4, up on 47.8 in December 2015. The Composite index was helped to the upside by the Manufacturing PMI which was also in a contractionary territory at 49.8, but above the very poor performance levels of the Services PMI. January marked second consecutive month that both Manufacturing and Services PMIs for Russia were below 50.0. Last time that this happened was in December 2014-January 2015 and in February-March 2015 - in other words, at the dire depth of the current crisis. Overall, Russia is once again (second month in a row) ranks as the second lowest BRIC performer in terms of Composite PMI reading, ahead of only a complete basket case of Brazil.

As also noted in an in-depth analysis here: due to a substantial improvement in the Services PMI, China’s Composite PMI signalled stabilisation in overall economy-wide business activity in January, with Composite Output Index registering fractionally above the no-change 50.0 value at 50.1, up from 49.4 in December. However, overall, Composite PMI of China has been above 50.0 in only two of the last 6 months and on both occasions, index readings were not statistically distinguishable from 50.0. 3mo average through January for Composite PMI stood at 50.0 (zero growth) against 48.9 average through October 2015 and 51.3 average through January 2015. In other words, the economy, judging by Composite PMI might be closer to stabilising, but growth is not exactly roaring back.

India’s Composite PMI rose from 51.6 in December to an 11-month high of 53.3 in January. Per Markit, “Lifting the index were a rebound in manufacturing production as well as stronger growth of services output.” 3mo average for Composite reading is now a5 51.7, slightly down from 52.3 3mo average through October 2015 and compared to 52.8 3mo average through January 2015. With manufacturing and services order books now in an expansionary territory, “growth of new business across the private sector as a whole was at a ten-month high… Higher workloads encouraged service providers to hire additional staff in January, following a stagnation in the prior month. …Meanwhile, manufacturing jobs rose at a marginal rate.” While overall Indian economy has clearly returned to robust growth, underlying conditions remain relatively weak by historical standards. 3mo average Composite index at current 51.7 is well below the historical average of 54.8. India remained on track to being the strongest economy in the BRIC group overall for the 7th month in a row.

In the case of Brazil’s Composite PMIs, the index registered continued rate of contraction rate of contraction for 11th month in a row - a record that is worse than that for Russia. Over the last 24 months, Brazil’s Composite PMI has managed to reach above 50.0 on only 5 occasions, against Russia’s Composite PMI’s 7. Over the last 12 months, Brazil’s Composite PMI was above 50.0 only once, with Russian counterpart rising above 50.0 in 4 months. On a 3mo average basis, Brazil’s Composite PMI stood at 44.5 in January 2016, slightly better than 43.4 reading for the 3mo period through October 2015, but below 49.3 reading attained in January 2015. Per Markit: “January saw Brazil’s economic recession weighing on the private sector for another month …the seasonally adjusted Composite Output Index remained in contraction territory, highlighting a further sharp drop in activity. Moreover, the current sequence of continuous downturn has been extended to 11 months, the longest in almost nine years of data collection.” Both Services and Manufacturing sectors order books posted contractions, meaning that “the private sector as a whole posted an eleventh successive monthly decline in new business. Firms reported tough economic conditions and a subsequent fall in demand.” Once again, Brazil retained its dubious title as the worst performing BRIC economy - a title it has been holding for the last 11 months.

Charts and table to illustrate:

As shown in the above charts, Russia is now exerting a downward momentum on overall BRIC growth dynamics for the second month in a row. However, due to improvements in India and China, BRICs as a whole are now adding positive support for global growth. That support is relatively new and still fragile enough not to call a change in trend in the series.

1/2/16: BRIC Manufacturing PMI January: A Test of Stagnation?

I covered China Manufacturing PMI in an earlier separate note here: with core conclusion that Chinese Manufacturing PMIs have been now running second worst in the BRIC’s group since July 2015, staying above only Brazil’s - a country that is in an outright recession. PMI index came in tat 48.4 in January, marginally up on 48.2 in December 2015, marking 11th consecutive month of sub-50 readings. 3mo average through January 2016 is now at 48.4 against 3mo average through October 2015 at 47.6. Current 3mo average is down significantly on 49.8 3mo average through January 2015. Last time Chinese Manufacturing posted statistically significant expansion (as measured by PMI reading above 51.46 - the statistically significant growth marker - was back in July 2014.

India Manufacturing PMI posted a rise to 51.1 in January from 49.1 in December, with January reading being highest in 4 months. This sounds like good news, expect it is not. The reason is that at 51.1, the PMI is well below historical average of 54.5. And it is below January 2015 level of 52.9. 3mo average through January 2016 is at zero growth mark 50.0, which compered poorly to 3mo average through October 2015 at 51.4 and worse relative to 53.6 which is 3mo average through January 2015. Market release was quite upbeat on India numbers, however, noting that “the industry recovered following the contraction seen at the end of last year. Alongside a resumption of output at some firms impacted by December’s flooding, manufacturers also benefited from rising inflows of new business from domestic and export clients.” The sectoral breakdown of the index is also concerning. Again per Markit, “The consumer goods subsector remained the principal growth engine at the start of the year, seeing substantial expansions of both output and new orders. In contrast, producers of investment goods saw output and new orders fall, while production volumes stagnated in the intermediate goods category.”

Russian PMIs were covered in a stand alone post here: with core conclusion that although Russia retained its's position as the second strongest performing economy by Manufacturing PMIs in the BRIC group in January, the latest reading puts Russian Manufacturing in a stagnation zone too close to 50.0 to call it a full-blown contraction. This has meant that over the last 3 months, Russian Manufacturing PMI averaged 49.7, a reading nominally below 50.0, although an improvement on 49.1 average for 3 months through October 2015, and on 49.4 3-mo average through January 2015. In simple terms, Russian Manufacturing continued to contract in 3 months through January 2016, but the rate of contraction was virtually indistinguishable from zero growth.

This leaves us to cover Brazil Manufacturing PMI. Brazil Manufacturing index posted a rise in January, hitting an 11-mo high of 47.4. By all normal metrics, this is a disaster territory reading, consistent with rather sharp deterioration in trading conditions. But for Brazil - this was an improvement, especially as output and news orders both were contracting at slower rates in January. Per Markit: “The downturn in the Brazilian manufacturing sector continued at the start of 2016, with levels of production and new orders contracting for the twelfth successive month. This continued to filter through to decisions relating to staff hiring, stock holdings and purchasing activity, all of which also declined during the latest survey month.”  On the positive (sort of) side, “output declined at weaker rates in each of the three production categories (consumer, intermediate and investment) covered by the survey. Underlying the latest decrease in output was a further reduction in the level of incoming new orders. The latest drop in inflows of new work received was mainly centred on the domestic market, as the volume of new export business expanded for the second straight month in January.” On a 3mo average basis, 3mo average through January 2016 is at 44.5, which is worse that 3mo average through October 2015 (45.6) and 3mo average through Ja
nuary 2015 (49.9). In simple terms, Brazil remains the basket case of BRIC economies, leading the group to the downside on Manufacturing.

Chart and table below summarise the BRIC’s outlook:

So, overall, BRIC Manufacturing side of the economy is still in a woeful shape. India's return to growth is relatively weak, while contractionary conditions prevail in Brazil (strong, albeit moderating on the end of 2015), Russia (very weak contraction, closer to stagnation) and China (where PMI data has been at serious odds with official national accounts data for some time now). The net result for the global growth is not exactly encouraging.

6/1/16: BRIC Composite PMIs: December

In recent posts, I covered Manufacturing sector PMIs for BRIC economies based on monthly data and Services Sector PMIs here.

Now, let’s consider Composite PMIs for BRIC:

Brazil Composite PMI fell from 44.5 on November to 43.9 in December, As the result, the economy posted 10th consecutive month of sub-50 readings, and since April 2014, Brazil’s economy registered above 50 readings in only three months, with none of these three readings being statically significantly different from 50.0. The last time Brazil’s Composite PMI posted reading statistically consistent with positive growth was in February 2013.

In December, both Manufacturing and Services sectors indicated contracting activity, with Markit concluding that “Private sector activity in Brazil continued to plunge in December as a deepening economic retreat contributed to a further contraction in new business. The seasonally adjusted Composite Output Index fell from 44.5 in November to 43.9 at the year end, pointing to a sharp and stronger rate of reduction. Whereas the downturn in manufacturing production eased (though remained severe), services activity declined at a quicker pace.”

Over 4Q 2015, Brazil Composite PMI averaged 43.7 which is about as bad as the average of 43.6 achieved in 3Q 2015 and much worse than already contractionary average of 49.0 posted in 4Q 2014.

Russian Composite PMI was covered in detail here. Overall, Russia’s Composite index slipped into contraction during December, falling to 47.8, from 50.5 in November, with the decline in output reflected across both manufacturing production and services activity. Overall, Russian economy’s composite PMI averaged 49.1 in 4Q 2015 which is much worse than 50.4 average for 3Q 2015. The data strongly suggests that not only did the economy failed to attain stabilisation, but that growth might have turned more negative in 4Q 2015.

Chinese Composite PMI also signalled declining business activity in December, falling to 49.4 from 50.5 in November. Overall, China posted four months of below 50 readings on Composite PMIs out of the last 5 months and the last time Chinese Composite PMI was consistent with statistically significant growth was in August 2014. In 4Q 2015, Chinese Composite PMI averaged 49.9, which is better than 3Q 2015 average of 49.2, but much worse than the 4Q 2014 average of 51.6. Unlike Russia and Brazil, which posted sub-50 readings across both Manufacturing and Services, China posted sub-40 reading in Manufacturing and above 50 reading in Services, That said, the Services reading was 50.2 - statistically consistent with zero growth - and the second weakest on record (the weakest point was 50.0 in July 2014).

India Composite PMI rose unexpectedly from November’s five-month low of 50.2 to a four-months high of 51.6 in December. Thus, per Markit, the index was “indicative of a rebound in growth of private sector activity. Whereas manufacturing production decreased for the first time since October 2013, services activity increased at an accelerated pace.”

Further per Markit: “Leading services activity to increase was a solid rise in incoming new work, one that was faster than that seen in November. Anecdotal evidence highlighted strengthening demand conditions. Conversely, manufacturing order books decreased, with panellists indicating that demand had been suppressed by the Chennai floods. Across the
private sector as a whole, new business inflows expanded at a faster pace that was, however,

4Q 2015 Composite PMI for India stood at 51.5, down from 52.1 in 3Q 2015 and down on 52.2 average for 4Q 2014.

Overall Russia was a negative contributor to the BRIC Composite Activity Index dynamic in December, although overall ex-Russia group performance continued to deteriorate in December faster than in November, as indicated in the chart below:

Note: Composite Activity Index is based on my own calculations weighing BRIC economies by their shares of global GDP. The Index is based on a scale of 100=zero growth.

In 4Q 2015, average Composite Activity Index for BRIC ex-Russia was 96.7 which was marginally better than in 3Q 2015 (86.5) but worse than 101.8 average for 4Q 2014.

Overall 4Q 2015 BRIC Composite Activity Index stood at 99.0, down on 99.2 in 3Q 2015 and on 102.1 recorded in 4Q 2014. 

The chart below shows a clear downward trend in BRIC activity setting on from June 2014 and accelerating since May 2015.