Australia's manufacturing activity contracted sharply in April.
The Australian Industry Group reported Tuesday that its Performance of Manufacturing Index declined 5.6 points to 43.9.
Readings below 50 indicate a contraction of activity in the sector.
"The steep fall in manufacturing activity in April rings true and is of serious concern," said AIG Chief Executive Ennes Willox. "Manufacturers continue to be adversely affected by the strong dollar, comparatively high unit labor costs and rising energy prices. Production, employment and new orders all fell sharply in April pointing again to the importance of lower interest rates both in reducing borrowing costs and in easing pressures on the currency."
AIG said the biggest declines were seen in the basic metals, textiles and wood products, and furniture sub-sectors.
The employment index fell into contraction at 46.1 while production also contracted, with a reading of 43.9.
by RTT Staff Writer
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