The Caixin China General Manufacturing PMI fell to a seven-month low of 51.5 in January 2021 from 53.0 in December, missing market expectation of 52.7.
Both output and new orders rose at softer paces, while export sales shrank for the first time in six months due to a resurgence in COVID-19 infections globally. Also, buying levels expanded the least since last May. Employment fell after broadly stabilizing in December, with manufacturers recording the slowest accumulation in backlogs of work for eight months.
On the cost front, input prices inflation slowed slightly from December’s three-year high, while selling prices went up at the steepest rate since June 2018.
Looking ahead, sentiment touched its lowest in eight months. “This year, we should pay attention to the effectiveness of domestic epidemic prevention, and look at how to bring new momentum to the Chinese economy, ” said Wang Zhe, senior economist at Caixin Insight Group.