January U.S. PMI signals strongest manufacturing growth since March 2015
Moreover, production levels and new orders grew at the quickest rates in twelve months.
Rising global demand also drove a faster expansion in new export orders.
Higher production requirements resulted in a sharp and accelerated increase in buying activity.
At the same time, the rate of input cost inflation eased slightly but remained marked overall.
Consequently, firms raised their selling prices at the secondsteepest pace since September 2014.
The seasonally adjusted IHS Markit final US Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index™ (PMI™) registered 55.5 in January, up from 55.1 in December.
The latest index reading indicated a strong improvement in business conditions across the manufacturing sector.
Moreover, the index signalled the strongest upturn in the health of the sector for over two-and-a-half years.
Extending the trend seen since June 2016, manufacturers indicated a further rise in production in January.
The rate of growth accelerated to the sharpest in twelve months.
Where increases in output were reported, panellists generally linked this to more favourable economic conditions and higher inflows of new work.
Greater domestic and foreign client demand underpinned the largest rise in total new orders since January 2017.
New business from abroad registered one of the largest gains seen over the past year and a half.
For the thirteenth month running, vendor performance deteriorated as capacity pressures at suppliers led to longer lead times.
Purchasing activity rose at the quickest rate since September 2014, stretching supply chains, and pre-production inventories accumulated at the fastest pace in twelve months.
The latest rise in input costs largely stemmed from greater raw material prices and higher transport costs.
Although the rate of inflation was marked, it dipped slightly to a three-month low.
Conversely, output charge inflation accelerated to the secondhighest since September 2014. ■