MEXICO CITY Oct 1 Mexico's manufacturing sector
stagnated in September, underscoring weak growth after a slump
this year at the factories of Latin America's second-biggest
economy, a survey showed on Tuesday.
The HSBC Mexico Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' Index
fell to 50.0 in September, after adjusting for
seasonal variation, from 50.8 in August.
A reading above 50 signals expansion. The monthly reading
was the second-lowest since the series began in April 2011. The
index posted its first recorded contraction in July, followed by
August's slight expansion.
"This result suggests that the manufacturing sector will
grow, but at a moderate pace. This is consistent with the
incipient signs of recovery observed in non-oil exports, in
particular in auto exports," said Sergio Martin, chief economist
at HSBC in Mexico.
Factory output and new orders slowed compared to August, the
survey showed. Shaky U.S. demand, along with a drop in local
construction, has dragged on Mexico's economy this year.
Mexico's economy contracted for the first time in four years
in the second quarter, pushing the central bank to lower
interest rates in September. The economy is seen growing only
about 1.7 percent this year compared to 3.8 percent in 2012.
The PMI index, compiled by Markit, is composed of five
sub-indices tracking changes in new orders, output, employment,
suppliers' delivery times and stocks of raw materials and