India's manufacturing sector expands in March: PMI

India's manufacturing sector expands in March: PMI

Still, anything above 50 signals growth, and the March reading was slightly better than economists expected.

The latest JP Morgan-IHS Markit global manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) held steady at 53.0 in March, remaining at the highest level seen in 69-months.

During March, the pound was weaker and helped competitiveness in exports and the confidence of companies remained high.

According to Markit, manufacturing growth slowed to a six-month low.

On Friday, Trump sought to push his crusade for fair trade and more manufacturing jobs back to the top of his agenda by ordering a study into the causes of US trade deficits and a clampdown on import duty evasion.

Digging into the underlying data in the ISM report, new orders (down from 65.1 to 64.5) continued to expand at a vigorous pace, with that measure now exceeding 60 for the fourth consecutive month. That's 0.8% above January's upwardly revised level and improved 3% from the same time a year ago.

The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of national factory activity slipped to a reading of 57.2 last month from 57.7 in February, which was the highest since August 2014.

"However, while it's great to see this continued boost in performance, there are warning signs for the industry in the form of inflationary pressures and lagging vendor delivery times both key elements to keep the European manufacturing industry growing and increasing in productivity".

Headcounts rose for the eighth consecutive month, while job growth increased at the fastest pace in almost a year and a half.

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IHS Markit U.S. Economist Michael Montgomery said current ISM numbers are positive for manufacturing.

We have also added "trigger" questions, which apply when the respondent has the same answer on a sub-index for two successive months and then changes it for the third.

The Inventories Index registered 49 percent in March, which is a decrease of 2.5 percentage points when compared to the 51.5 percent reported for February, indicating raw materials inventories are contracting in March.

The dollar rose against the yen on the data, while prices for US government bonds were little changed.

United Kingdom manufacturing unexpectedly cooled for a third month in March and may weaken further this quarter, according to IHS Markit.

Interruptions to the reflationary plans could see United States orders and global investment slump in the next months as businesses become warier.

"This downbeat effect took a small bite out of any strong rises in employment levels, as the increase in staff hiring was at a three-month low".

Meantime, a report on the nation's construction sector, also issued Monday, showed that construction spending in February increased to an 11-year high of $1.19 trillion.