China’s HSBC flash manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) slipped to 49.2 in March, from a final reading of 50.7 and a flash reading of 50.1 in February. It is an 11-month low for the index.
"The (reading)…signaled a slight deterioration in the health of China’s manufacturing sector in March. A renewed fall in total new business contributed to a weaker expansion of output, while companies continued to trim their workforce numbers," says Annabel Fiddes, economist at Markit.
"We think March activity data will likely remain weak and the government will likely step up easing to stabilize growth," says a research report by BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research.