Jakarta: The ASEAN manufacturing sector recorded an improvement in operating conditions during June, according to the latest S&P Global's purchasing manager index (PMI) data.
The headline PMI registered 52.0 in June, down slightly from 52.3 in May, to signal a solid overall improvement in the health of the ASEAN manufacturing sector.
That said, growth eased for the second month running, to the second-softest in the current nine-month sequence of expansion.
Six of the seven ASEAN nations signalled growth during June, with Singapore leading the rankings table for the seventh month running. Moreover, the rate of improvement (59.3) was marked and accelerated to a new series high.
Operating conditions also improved in Vietnam’s manufacturing sector, albeit at a softer pace. At 54.0 in June, the headline PMI for Vietnam was quicker than its long-run series average.
Similar was the case for the Philippines. Despite a fractional loss in growth momentum, the latest uptick (53.8) measured the third-fastest since November 2018 and indicated five successive months of growth.
Elsewhere, mild expansions were seen at manufacturing firms in Thailand (50.7), Malaysia (50.4) and Indonesia (50.2). While the pace of increase accelerated at the Malaysian manufacturing sector, Thai and Indonesian manufactures reported the slowest rates of growth for six and ten months, respectively.
Finally, Myanmar noted its second successive deterioration in operating conditions during June. The headline PMI figure slipped to 48.2 to signal a quicker decline compared to that in May.
"The latest PMI data signalled a further loss in growth momentum across the ASEAN manufacturing sector. Firms, despite increasing production levels and receiving higher volumes of new orders, cut back on headcounts, holdings of raw materials and semi-finished items in June," Maryam Baluch, Economist at S&P Global Market Intelligence said in a press release on Friday.
"Growth slowed in four of the seven monitored nations in June while Myanmar recorded a decline. Surging inflation, raw material shortages and energy price hikes, impacted each region in one way or another," Baluch added.
Nevertheless, the economist stated, sentiment was positive across the ASEAN manufacturing sector with panellists hopeful that output would expand in the coming 12 months.