US PMI Plunge Confirms Near-Record Streak Of Disappointing Global Economic Data

Amid one of the longest streaks ever in disappointing global data surprises...

US 'hard' economic data continues to stagnate and 'soft' survey data begins to catch down...


After China's dismal data overnight, and Europe's PMI misses this morning, and following November's slide, US flash PMIs for December notably disappointed, tumbling further...

  • Markit US Manufacturing plunged from 55.3 to 53.9 - the lowest since September 2017

  • Markit US Services dropped from 54.7 to 53.4 - the lowest since Jan 2018

It seems the 'hard' data was right after all...


Commenting on the flash PMI data, Chris Williamson, Chief Business Economist at IHS Markit said:

“Importantly, although growth remains relatively robust, momentum is being lost and is likely to continue to fade as we move into 2019. New order inflows hit the lowest since April of last year and expectations regarding future business growth have slipped to the lowest for two-and-a-half years.

“The surveys reveal greater caution in relation to spending amid uncertainty about the economic outlook, linked in part to growing geopolitical concerns and trade wars.”

“The weaker picture of current and future business growth has curbed appetite for hiring. Jobs growth inched down to the lowest for one and half years but remains consistent with non-farm payrolls rising in December by around 180,000.

“Price pressures have meanwhile cooled as lower oil prices feed through, yet rising tariffs remain a concern for many companies, keeping input cost inflation above the survey’s long-run average.”

And finally, Williamson notes,:

“The flash PMIs bring signs of the US economy ending 2018 on a softer note. With business activity expanding at the slowest rate for one and a half years, the surveys indicate that the pace of economic growth has faded to 2.0% in December, albeit closer to 2.5% for the fourth quarter as a whole.