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March 2015 Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index

by: Smith and Howard

April 1, 2015

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April 1, 2015: Georgia’s Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) — a reading of economic activity in the state’s manufacturing sector — decreased 1.5 points during March. The Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) Report is underwritten by the Manufacturing and Distribution Group of Smith & Howard, a top Atlanta CPA firm with a focus on serving manufacturing businesses, and is produced monthly by the Econometric Center at Kennesaw State University.

Some general remarks from the March respondents: 

  • “The weather has really had an effect on business.”
  • “We have more than we can do for the next 3-4 months.”
  • “West Coast dock slow down still having negative impact in the ecomony.”

Other highlights of the March PMI include:

  • New orders were down 1.7 points, to 65
  • Production was up 5.8 points, to 72.5
  • Employment was down 15 points, to 55
  • Supplier delivery time was down 6.7 points, to 50
  • Finished inventory was up 10 points, to 60
  • Commodity prices were up 5.8 points, to 42.5

The Georgia PMI provides a snapshot of manufacturing activity in the state, just as the monthly PMI released by the Institute for Supply Management provides a picture of national manufacturing activity. The national PMI was down 1.4 points in March, to 51.5. A PMI reading above 50 indicates that manufacturing activity is expanding; a reading below 50 indicates it is contracting.

The Georgia PMI reading is a composite of five variables — new orders, production, employment, supply deliveries and finished inventory. A sixth variable, commodity prices, is compiled by the Coles College’s Econometric Center but does not go into the PMI calculation.

The PMI, compiled from a monthly survey of manufacturers, is the earliest indicator of market conditions in the sector. Since manufacturing, which accounts for 11 percent of GDP, is sensitive to changes in the economy, it can also reveal changing macroeconomic trends.

The PMI’s value is in its timeliness and sensitivity to variables such as interest rates, global markets and other economic changes. The Georgia PMI provides valuable data used by institutions such as the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta to assist in their analysis of current economic conditions, along with many other data sources, to get a picture of economic activity.

Read the entire report by clicking the PDF link at the top of this article. Contact any member of the manufacturing industry accounting group or the distribution industry accounting group of Smith & Howard at 404-874-6244.

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