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Asia economic downturn spreads as supply constraints hit more sectors

08 September 2021 Jingyi Pan

Asia Sector PMI showed only five of 18 sectors reported output growth in August, the lowest number since June 2020. Sectors that saw a contraction of output were noticeably also ones experiencing constraints on production and relatively more severe input cost inflation, reflecting the strain on these private sector firms.

Few Asia sectors saw output growth

The latest IHS Markit Asia Sector PMI™ revealed that only five of 18 sectors monitored indicated growth of output in August, the lowest total since June 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit many Asia economies hard.

The five sectors that saw growth were noticeably led by pharmaceuticals & biotechnology, while financials such as insurance, real estate and banking followed close behind. This perhaps comes as little surprise amid the spread of the more infectious COVID-19 Delta variant, which has acted as a drag on activity across many industrial and most service sectors.

Asia Sector PMI Output Index

PMI sub-indices reveal supply bottlenecks

Digging deeper into the sub-indices performance across the 18 sectors monitored, however, one would find...

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Purchasing Managers' Index™ (PMI™) data are compiled by IHS Markit for more than 40 economies worldwide. The monthly data are derived from surveys of senior executives at private sector companies, and are available only via subscription. The PMI dataset features a headline number, which indicates the overall health of an economy, and sub-indices, which provide insights into other key economic drivers such as GDP, inflation, exports, capacity utilization, employment and inventories. The PMI data are used by financial and corporate professionals to better understand where economies and markets are headed, and to uncover opportunities.

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