Economic Watch: China's factory activities slow down, non-manufacturing sector continues to expand

Source: Xinhua| 2021-10-31 18:07:41|Editor: huaxia

BEIJING, Oct. 31 (Xinhua) -- China's factory activities slowed down in October amid tight power supply and high raw material prices, while the non-manufacturing sector continued expansion.

The purchasing managers' index (PMI) for China's manufacturing sector came in at 49.2 this month, down from 49.6 in September, data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed Sunday.

A reading above 50 indicates expansion, while a reading below reflects contraction.

The slowdown came as power supply continued to be tight and prices of some raw materials rose sharply, said NBS senior statistician Zhao Qinghe.

In October, the sub-index measuring purchase prices of major raw materials rose 8.6 percentage points from September to 72.1, while the ex-factory price index climbed to 61.1, up 4.7 percentage points from last month.

The sub-index for production retreated 1.1 percentage points to 48.4, while that for new orders dropped 0.5 percentage points to 48.8.

The figures showed that production and market demand in the manufacturing sector both weakened last month, said Zhao.

The new export order and import sub-indexes edged up to 46.6 and 47.5, respectively.

With the slower recovery of major world economies and complicated global economic and trade situation, the imports and exports situation in the manufacturing sector remains uncertain, said Zhao.

Bucking the overall trend, the high-tech and equipment manufacturing sectors continued to expand in October, with their PMI at 52 and 51.2, respectively.

Large enterprises maintained steady operation this month, with their PMI standing at 50.3. The PMI for medium and small enterprises came in at 48.6 and 47.5, respectively. The PMI for small enterprises has stayed in the contraction zone for six consecutive months, reflecting relatively high operating pressure.

Sunday's data also showed that the PMI for China's non-manufacturing sector came in at 52.4 in October, down from 53.2 in September.

Business activities in the non-manufacturing sector continued expansion, but at a slower pace, according to Zhao.

In October, the sub-index for business activities in the services sector stood at 51.6, down 0.8 percentage points from that in September.

Sectors such as accommodation, catering and entertainment, recorded marked increases in business volume, driven by the week-long National Day holiday in early October. Their sub-indexes for business activities all stood above 55, according to the NBS.

Consumers were more inclined to stay put or take short trips during the holiday due to the epidemic and weather situation, said Zhao. This had led to relatively weaker expansion in both rail and air transportation.

The sub-index tracking business activity expectations for the services sector stood at 58.5, 0.4 percentage points lower than last month, showing most service enterprises are still relatively optimistic about the market in the near term.

In October, China's construction industry maintained steady growth, with the sub-index for business activities standing at 56.9. The indexes measuring new orders and employment stood at 52.3 and 52.4, respectively. Enditem

KEY WORDS: China,Economy,PMI