Manufacturing Output Down in May: Markit PMI

Manufacturing in this country saw operating conditions worsen again in May, according to figures released by an international statistical body.

The seasonally-adjusted IHS Markit Canada Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI®) fell from 49.7 in April to 49.1 in May, signaling a second-successive monthly deterioration in business conditions. The latest PMI reading was the lowest in nearly three-and-a-half years, albeit still indicating only a slight downturn.

Production continued to contract amid the sharpest drop in new orders since December 2015. More positively, employment saw a fractional increase after a slight dip in April, whilst input price inflation eased to its slowest rate in over four years.

All components of the headline index, except for employment, had a downward impact on the figure. Output contracted at the most marked rate since the end of 2015. Panelists linked this to falling new orders and subdued global trade conditions.

Correspondingly, total new manufacturing orders dropped for the third month running and at the sharpest rate in this period. Firms noted weaker demand in both domestic and foreign markets.