Greek manufacturing activity climbs to a nine-year high

China Factory Growth Accelerates, Service Industries Slip

Although the rate of improvement in foreign demand eased from July's near-record high, it remained among the strongest seen since new export orders data were first collected in January 1996.

Factory output grew unexpectedly in August to bring the country's manufacturing sector back into growth zone on surge in new business orders after the GST-related contraction in July, a monthly survey showed today.

The Caixin/Markit manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index was expected to dip slightly to 50.9 in August from 51.1 in July, according to a Reuters poll. Readings above 50 indicate expansion, while anything below 50 indicates contraction.

Sustained growth in new orders led firms to expand their production schedules again in August.

Growth in China's services sector slowed in August, hitting the lowest level since May 2016, an official survey showed on Thursday. This was highlighted by the sharpest increase in export sales since March 2010.

"Today's data confirm that United Kingdom manufacturers are looking beyond the Brexit negotiations to strengthening market opportunities in Europe and beyond, with the acceleration in manufacturing activity in August helping to provide some welcome offset to sluggish consumer demand at home", added Ms Lee Hopley, chief economist at EEF, the manufacturers' organisation.

"While the central bank hinted in its latest policy decision that the accommodative policy stance is likely to continue in coming months, recent developments in inflation may mean smaller cuts to the Selic as we head towards the year end", IHS Markit economist Pollyanna De Lima said.

Samuel Tombs, chief United Kingdom economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, said: "The pick up in the PMI brings tentative hope that the recent decline in the official manufacturing output data will be reversed swiftly".

As well, copper is now at three-year highs having put on 7 per cent last month, while aluminium, nickel and zinc prices have been rising at their fastest monthly pace in five years.

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