SoKor’s manufacturing sector suffers as demand declines the sharpest in April
April results showed South Korea’s factories suffering under the pandemic. Global quarantine restrictions sent manufacturing operations declining the fastest since 2009 and exporters beaten by the historical drop in demand in 16 years.
April figures show that the IHS Markit purchasing managers’ index (PMI) declined to 41.6 from its initial standing of 44.2. This came to be the most extreme reading of the index after the 2009 record, placing under the 50-point mark that separates decline from growth.
“Panel reports suggest that automobile-related industries are being hit particularly hard by shutdowns overseas such as in North America and Europe, while severe supply chain dislocations mean that factories that do stay open are operating below capacity,” said IHS Markit economist Joe Hayes.
Total new orders fluctuated the biggest in 11 years, while export orders succumbed to record-breaking inactivity brought by the government’s decision of halting factory operations. The survey also showed weak export figures, highlighting inactivity in shipments.