Italy's Manufacturing Growth Robust In December

Italy's Manufacturing Growth Robust In December

Italy's Manufacturing Growth Robust In December

The Nikkei/Markit survey for India's December factory activity showed it expanded at the fastest pace in five years, buoyed by a rise in output and new orders, which allowed firms to raise prices.

The headline Purchasing Managers' Index, or PMI, dropped to 57.4 in December from 58.3 in November.

The index is based on a 100-point index on which the 50 mark divides expansion from contraction.

Meanwhile, the large food and beverages sub-sector recorded its highest monthly result since April 2016, while the non-metallic minerals sub-sector, wood and paper products and machinery and equipment all recorded their lowest index results for 2017.

Outstanding business also declined for a seventh successive month in December, showing evidence of under-capacity in the manufacturing sector.

However, full-year growth was still the fastest in three years at 3.5 percent, raising the possibility that the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) could tighten its exchange rate-based monetary policy this year.

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Smith said the PMI not only posted the highest reading ever recorded since the survey began in 1996, but its current 37-month sequence of improving business conditions also beat the previous record set in the runup to the financial crisis.

Chinese economic growth has been unexpectedly strong this year, but economists forecast activity will weaken as Beijing tightens up on bank lending to clamp down on rising debt that analyst say is the biggest threat to the country's economic stability.

Companies continued to shrink their payrolls last month, despite stronger increases in demand and production, but the rate of job losses was the slowest in nine months.

Finally, optimism amongst panelists remained elevated during December.

The Caixin manufacturing PMI for December compares with a decrease in the official PMI released by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) on Sunday. The level of new contracts received from overseas - mainly from Asia, the United States and Europe - rose at the fastest rate in the history of the survey.

"Overall, 2017's economic performance continues to be steady and good, establishing a generally good foundation for 2018", the federation said.

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