10 Mar Irish manufacturing sees first order increase in 9 months
The headline AIB Ireland Manufacturing PMI® for February improved to 51.3 from 50.1 in January, indicating improvement in the health of Ireland’s manufacturing sector, for the second month running.
The biggest positive driver was fresh order book volume growth in February, the first upturn since last May and linked to relative strengthening of underlying domestic demand conditions. However, export demand fell further in February and at the sharpest pace since May 2020.
Output volumes stabilised and there was strong growth in employment numbers. Output growth was linked to stronger order books, with those still reporting reductions in output citing historically subdued demand. Backlogs continued to erode sharply and stocks of finished goods increased, albeit only slightly. Inflationary pressures also continued to cool, with input price movement easing to a 26 month low, and output charge inflation to a 23 month low. However, purchasing activity dropped sharply.
Looking at output for the coming 12 months, Irish manufacturers were strongly upbeat; confidence reaching the highest level in a year.