What’s Affecting Germany’s Manufacturing Activity?


Dec. 4 2020, Updated 10:53 a.m. ET

Germany’s final manufacturing PMI in March 2018

According to a report by Markit Economics, Germany’s final manufacturing PMI (purchasing managers’ index) stood at 58.2 in March as compared to 60.6 in February 2018. The PMI figure was slightly below the preliminary market estimate of 58.4. Germany’s manufacturing PMI witnessed a massive drop in performance in March 2018.

Germany’s manufacturing PMI in March 2018 was mainly due to the following factors:

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  • Production volume and output growth remained weaker in March 2018. It was the slowest expansion in factory output since August 2017.
  • The new business order and export orders also slowed in March 2018. New orders growth was the slowest since December 2016.
  • Similarly, employment in the manufacturing sector also weakened in that month.

Performance of various ETFs in March

The iShares MSCI Germany ETF (EWG), which tracks the performance of Germany, fell 1.2% in March 2018. However, the Vanguard FTSE Europe ETF (VGK), which tracks Europe’s (N100-INDEX) economic performance, rose 0.3% in the same month.

The weaker improvement in Germany’s manufacturing PMI in March was mainly due to the rising uncertainty about the global trade environment. The weaker consumer sentiment, demand outlook, and business confidence affected the overall performance of the manufacturing industry in March 2018.

In the next part of this series, we’ll analyze the performance of Spain’s manufacturing PMI in March 2018.


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