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Christmas Build-Up Boosts Manufacturing

Media release
17 December 2004

Christmas build-up boosts manufacturing

The PMI showed its usual spike of activity in November, with manufacturers gearing up for the Christmas/New Year season.

The latest ANZ-Business NZ Performance of Manufacturing Index (PMI) recorded a value of 65.9 (a PMI reading above 50 points indicates expansion and below 50 indicates decline). Strong expansionary levels for November are typical because of increased activity for the Christmas period, but this was the highest monthly value since the survey began. Business NZ Chief Executive Phil O'Reilly said the data is not seasonally adjusted, so a November 'spike' was to be expected.

New orders (69.8) and production (69.5) were the highest of the main diffusion index values, while deliveries (66.9) and finished stocks (59.3) recorded their highest values since the survey began. All regions recorded expansion. The Northern and Otago/Southland regions had similar levels of expansion (68.0 and 67.9 respectively), followed by the Central region (62.2) and Canterbury/Westland (61.0).

Manufacturers' comments indicate the high New Zealand dollar is still hampering activity (despite cheaper capital imports), while improved weather conditions have been positive for some manufacturers.

Mr O'Reilly said the high dollar was prompting some manufacturers to purchase cheaper capital equipment from overseas, indicating a positive move towards more elaborately transformed manufacturing.


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