Australian manufacturing achieves hat-trick of monthly growth

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The local manufacturing sector continued to expand for the third straight month, according to the Australian Industry Group’s Performance of Manufacturing Index survey.

The PMI for September of 52.1 was up from August’s 51.7, and July’s 50.4. Any result above 50 indicates expansion.

In a statement, Ai Group chief executive Innes Willox said the lower dollar was “a clear driver”, with local goods becoming more competitive against imports.

"Last month the Australian dollar was about 10 per cent lower than the average for the first half of the calendar year and against the Trade Weighted Index, the domestic currency was around 7 per cent lower in September,” he explained.

“The gains in the sector come despite continued weakness in two key manufacturing sub-sectors – metals, which is being buffeted by global demand/supply imbalances, and machinery and equipment, which despite areas of strong growth is battling the wind-down of automotive assembly and reduced orders from the mining sector.”

Four of eight sub-sectors and six of seven sub-indices were in growth.

According to Business Insider, it is the first case of three straight months of expansion since 2010.