PMI New Business Growth Hits Nine-Month High

4 Aug 2018
PMI by IHS Markit

Headline PMI rises to 52.0 in July, from 51.8 in June.

Qatar's non-hydrocarbon private sector started the third quarter on a solid footing, according to the latest QFC Qatar PMI data. A survey-record rate of job creation alongside marked new order growth contributed to July's findings. Furthermore, business confidence improved to the highest level recorded since the survey's inception in April 2017.

Survey-record job creation.

The survey, compiled for Qatar Financial Centre by IHS Markit, has been conducted since April 2017 and provides an early indication of operating conditions in Qatar. The headline figure derived from the survey is the Purchasing Managers' Index™ (PMI™).

Readings above 50.0 signal an improvement in business conditions on the previous month, while readings below 50.0 show a deterioration.


The headline seasonally adjusted Qatar Financial Centre PMI – a composite gauge designed to give a single-figure snapshot of operating conditions in the non-oil and gas private sector – rose to 52.0 in July, up from 51.8 in June. The figure was indicative of a moderate improvement in business conditions, and one that was above the survey average of 51.5.

Promotional activity stimulates client demand.

Inflows of new business increased at a marked rate during July. Firms linked stronger demand to improving domestic economic conditions and promotional activity. Reflecting new order growth, output increased in July, albeit at a fractionally slower pace than recorded in June.

 

Strong business confidence towards future growth prospects in the non-oil and gas private sector stimulated firms to hire additional staff during the latest survey. The level of business optimism and hiring were both at survey-record highs in July.

 

The reduction in selling prices softened from the survey-record decrease recorded in June. Nonetheless, output charges continued to fall at a marked pace overall, reflecting many firms engaging in promotional activities during the latest survey period.

 

Businesses in the non-hydrocarbon private sector reported the strongest improvement in vendor performance since the survey began during July.

 

Reflecting higher inflows of new business in the latest survey, backlogs of work built-up at a solid pace. The finding extended the current phase of rising backlogs of work to three months, with the most recent increase being the sharpest since last October.

 

Stocks of purchases held at Qatari non-oil private sector firms dropped for the first time since April, partly reflecting higher business activity.  

 

Comment

 

"Business activity growth across the non-hydrocarbon private sector accelerated during July, reflecting stronger domestic economic conditions. The latest Qatar Financial Centre PMI also suggested the fastest increase in new hires since the survey began in April last year, with many local businesses linking job creation to improved optimism towards future growth prospects and marked inflows of new orders."

 

Sheikha Alanoud bint Hamad Al-Thani

Managing Director, Business Development, QFC Authority

 

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