On a Brighter Note – PMI

21 Jan 2022




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Catherine Beard

Director, Advocacy BusinessNZ

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New Zealand's manufacturing sector saw an improvement in expansion levels for the last month of 2021, according to the latest BNZ - BusinessNZ Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI).

The seasonally adjusted PMI for December was 53.7 (a PMI reading above 50.0 indicates that manufacturing is generally expanding; below 50.0 that it is declining).  This was 2.5 points higher than November.

BusinessNZ's Director, Advocacy Catherine Beard said that 2021 was close to a year of two halves, with January-July showing generally strong expansion due to playing catch-up from the effects of the 2020 lockdowns.  The remaining months of 2021 have been lacklustre, so it remains to be seen whether the sector experiences another period of catch-up heading into 2022.  

"In terms of the main sub-indices, it was pleasing to see both Production (56.4) and New Orders (57.5) recording their highest values since July 2021.  Employment (52.0) went back into expansion, as did Finished Stocks (52.8)."

BNZ Senior Economist, Doug Steel stated that “in the final quarter of 2021 the PMI averaged 53.2, indicating a return to positive manufacturing GDP growth after a sharp negative in the prior quarter.”

View the Time Series Data

Main Indicies

Regional Results

Manufacturing Snapshot

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Doug Steel

Senior Economist, BNZ


The Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI) improved in December after underwhelming in November. It lifted to 53.7 from 51.2. This continues the PMI’s recent oscillation around its long-term average, of 53.1, following the heavy knock it took in August last year when it fell to 39.9 (as Delta appeared in the community along with associated restrictions).
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Production lifted to 56.4 and new orders rose to 57.5, both their strongest readings since July (pre-Delta). Employment rose to 52.0, after a strange-looking drop in November, while stocks bounced from a dip in the previous month.
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Challenges Remain

Deliveries of raw materials remains a clear outlier among the sub-components. While this indicator did lift to 50.0 in December from a very weak 43.9 in November, it remains below its long-term average of 52.9.
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Some Severe

Today’s PMI was generally a bit more upbeat than the NZIER’s latest Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion (QSBO) was for manufacturers regards the likes of activity, employment, and new orders. Some of this may reflect timing.
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View full BNZ Manufacturing Snapshot

PMI Time Series Table

The results are seasonally adjusted.

National IndiciesDec
BNZ - BusinessNZ PMI 47.339.951.754.651.253.7
New Orders48.644.254.554.655.457.5
Finished Stocks42.645.950.354.648.752.8

View the Time Series Data

BNZ - BusinessNZ PMI Time Series

January 2018 – December 2021

PMI Time Series Graph

International Results

J.P. Morgan Global Manufacturing PMITM
4 Jan 2022


International PMI