China manufacturing continues contraction as Australian sector grows

China’s manufacturing sector continues to shrink, according to yesterday’s official and unofficial PMI figures.

The ABC reports that the government’s National Bureau of Statistics’ PMI slipped from January’s 49.4 to 49 for February. It is the seventh straight month of results under 50 – the line separating expansion from contraction – and was lower than a Reuters survey of forecasts by economists predicting 49.3.

Business Insider notes that activity indices for new orders, new export orders and order backlogs recorded results of 48.6, 47.4 and 43.9 respectively.

The Caixin PMI, focussing on privately-owned SME factories came in at 48, down from 48.4 and the weakest result since 2009.

The weak results are partly due to the effects of the Chinese New Year in February, though do, however, continue an apparent trend of Australia’s manufacturing sector and China’s moving in opposite directions – at least according to PMI survey results.

As reported yesterday, the Australian Industry Group’s PMI survey for February recorded an overall result of 53.5 and the eighth consecutive month of a result over 50.