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Financial News: Australia Factory Activity Contracts Most Since 2016

Australia Factory Activity Contracts Most Since 2016

01/01/2020 - 22:18:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - Australia's manufacturing activity logged its deepest deterioration in conditions since the survey began in May 2016, IHS Markit survey results showed Thursday.

The Commonwealth Bank manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index fell to 49.2 in December from 49.9 in November. A score below 50 indicates contraction in the sector.

Despite rising exports, new orders declined at the fastest pace in the series history. This in turn contributed to another fall in backlogs of work.

Facing lower sales, firms cut production for a fourth straight month and at a survey-record pace. Employment also decreased in December. On the price front, overall cost burdens continued to rise in December but at a slower pace. Output charges rose only moderately and at the slowest rate for three months in December.

However, manufacturers were upbeat about the output in the year ahead. Expectations of improved economic conditions, higher sales projections and marketing activities were cited as factors driving growth.

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