Manufacturing output declines in April

Factory output posted a positive annual growth in April due to strong production of food and refined petroleum products, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported Friday, June 7.

In its Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries (MISSI), the PSA said the country's volume of production index (VoPI) went up to 6.7 percent in April from 5.8 percent in the previous month.

The index growth, however, slowed compared with 8.0 percent posted in the same month last year.

The expansion in VoPI was brought about by the positive growth rates of 15 industry divisions.

Of these, manufacture of coke and refined petroleum products was the major contributing factor with 19.2 percent annual growth rate.

On the contrary, seven industry divisions posted annual decreases with manufacture of other non-metallic mineral products exhibiting the fastest annual drop of -10.8 percent.

According to the PSA, only 28.8 percent of the establishments operated at 90 percent to 100 percent capacity.

About 42.3 percent of the respondents operated at 70 to 89 percent, while 28.9 percent operated below 70 percent capacity.

Meanwhile, the value of production index (VaPI) during the month also increased as it posted a 5.9 percent year-on-year jump last April from -6.8 percent in the previous month. In April 2023, it recorded a double-digit annual increase of 10.7 percent

Sixteen major sectors reported positive growth rates in April, led by manufacture of computer, electronic, optical products at an annual growth rate of 9.2 percent

On the other hand, remaining six industry divisions posted decrements in their production with manufacture of other non-metallic mineral products registering the fastest annual decline of -13.1 percent.

Volume of net sales year-on-year rose to 7.2 percent, while the rise in value improved to 6.4 percent.

S&P Global Market Intelligence reported that factory activity slipped to 51.9 in May from 52.2 in April due to low employment numbers despite growth in output.

The latest figure, however, remained above the crucial 50.0 neutral threshold for the ninth consecutive month.

However, the company noted that demand from external markets strengthened during the month, with new export orders rising for the fourth straight month.