Global manufacturing activity increased last month at the same modest pace as in September but factories produced a surplus of goods for the first time in at least seven years, a report showed on Monday. JPMorgan’s Global Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI), produced with Markit, held steady at 52.2 in October. That was one of the lowest readings this year but did come in above the 50 mark that separates growth from contraction for the 23rd month in a row.
“The global PMI continues to signal 3-4 percent annualized gains in manufacturing output as we head towards year-end,” said David Hensley, a director at JPMorgan. “While the new orders data suggest that demand is generally holding up well, this good news is countered to some degree by indications in the survey that finished goods inventory is increasing rapidly.”
The new orders sub-index remained at 52.9 but the stocks of finished goods went above 50 for the first time in the index’s seven-year history. The index combines survey data from countries including the United States, Japan, Germany, France, Britain, China and Russia.