Australian manufacturing growth streak hits 11th straight month

May saw the local manufacturing sector continue its best run of positive monthly results since September 2006, according to the Australian Industry Group’s Performance of Manufacturing Index.

The overall PMI was down 2.4 points, to 51.0,compared to April’s result. Any result over 50 indicates expansion.

It was the 11th consecutive above-50 result.

The sector was consolidating after a long period of an above-average dollar, said Ai Group chief executive Innes Willox. As well as this, it was “rebalancing in response to changes in global production and consumption trends.”

“We are seeing an increasing focus on consumable goods such as food, groceries and health products as well as building materials for the construction industry,” added Willox in a statement.

“We are still seeing contraction, however, in the heavy industrials categories and especially in metals and some types of machinery and equipment manufacturing such as automotive production.”

By sub-index, six of seven categories were above 50, with employment down 3.4 points to 45.6.

Five of eight sub-sectors grew in May, led by wood & paper products, up 1.9 points to 67.7, and food, beverages & tobacco (down 8.8 points to 65.3).

(Click here for the Ai Group’s full results.)