Preliminary China PMI Rises In April
First Published Monday, 23rd April 2012 03:05 am - © 2012 Dow Jones
BEIJING -- The preliminary HSBC China Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index, a gauge of nationwide manufacturing activity, rose to a two-month high of 49.1 in April compared with a final reading of 48.3 in March, HSBC Holdings PLC said Monday.
The rise in the PMI could assuage market concerns over a sharp slowdown in the world's second-largest economy amid weak exports and a declining domestic property market.
A reading below 50 indicates contraction from the previous month, while anything above that indicates growth.
The April reading marks the sixth straight month the index has been in contractionary territory, signaling difficulties faced by the nation's manufacturers have increased.
"As April flash PMI ticked higher, this suggests that the earlier easing measures have started to work and hence should ease concerns of a sharp growth slowdown," HSBC Chief Economist for China Qu Hongbin said in a statement.
However, "The pace of both output and demand growth remains at a low level in an historical context and the job market is under pressure. This calls for additional easing measures in the coming months," he said. HSBC expects monetary and fiscal easing to speed up in the second quarter.
The preliminary China PMI figure, also called the HSBC Flash China PMI, is based on 85% to 90% of total responses to HSBC's PMI survey each month, and is issued about one week before the final PMI reading. The final PMI reading for April is due May 2.