The ABSA Manufacturing PMI for South Africa rose to 52.1 in July 2019 from 46.2 in the prior month. The reading marked the first expansion in factory activity since December 2018 and the strongest since June 2016, boosted by improvements in new-sales orders and business activity. However, "these levels may not be sustained as it was likely driven by increased output by manufacturers to safeguard against potential strike-related disruptions in the automotive or platinum-mining industries, where wage negotiations are taking place", Absa noted. Meantime, employment and input buying continued to fall, but a slightly slower pace. Also, manufacturers were less optimistic regarding the outlook for production over the next six months. Manufacturing PMI in South Africa averaged 50.96 from 1999 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 60.87 in April of 2002 and a record low of 35.09 in April of 2009.
Manufacturing PMI in South Africa is expected to be 50.00 by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Manufacturing PMI in South Africa to stand at 47.40 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the South Africa Manufacturing PMI is projected to trend around 50.30 in 2020, according to our econometric models.