WARSAW, Aug 3 – Polish factory activity grew steadily in July as the easing of coronavirus restrictions lifted output, new orders, exports and purchasing, pushing the IHS Markit Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) above 50 for the first time since October 2018.
The PMI for manufacturing rose to 52.8 in July from 47.2 in June, above the 50.0 line that separates growth from contraction. Analysts polled by Reuters had forecast a reading of 50.0.
The figure pointed to the strongest month-on-month improvement in the underlying health of the manufacturing sector for two years, but nonetheless manufacturers continued to cut jobs as they adjusted capacity.
“A third successive strong rise in the headline PMI in July… brought to an end a 20-month run of negative readings, the longest downturn in business conditions in nearly 18 years,” said Trevor Balchin, Economics Director at IHS Markit.
“The PMI was mainly driven higher by the output and new orders sub-components, as demand began to recover as lockdown restrictions continued to ease.” (Reporting by Alan Charlish; Editing by Hugh Lawson)