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Vietnam's Manufacturing Sector Shrinks In December

1/2/2013 1:12 AM ET

Vietnam's manufacturing sector contracted in December, hurt by educed new order inflows, disinvestment of inventory holdings and stagnating production volumes, data released by Markit Economics and HSBC Bank showed Wednesday.

The seasonally adjusted purchasing managers' index (PMI) for the manufacturing sector dropped to 49.3 in December from 50.5 in November, marking the eighth decline in activity in the past nine months.

New orders placed with manufacturing firms decreased during the month, with orders in both the domestic and export market falling compared to the previous month. Production at Vietnamese factories remained broadly unchanged in December after rising modestly in the previous month.

Despite the muted overall performance, firms increased their workforces for the third successive month, though at a marginal rate.

Input prices declined for the first time in five months, though modestly, due mainly to weak demand for raw materials, especially in the domestic market. Output prices dropped for the eighth consecutive month, and the rate of fall was broadly in line with the average for this period.

by RTT Staff Writer

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