Mike Shedlock

In Japan things have gone from Grim to Grimmer. The Markit/JMMA Japan Manufacturing PMI™ shows Japanese manufacturing sector contracts at sharpest rate in 19 months.

Key points:

Output and new orders both continue to decline
Capital goods producers register sharpest falls in production and sales
Inventories and employment cut amid subdued economic outlook

Summary:

Operating conditions in the Japanese manufacturing sector continued to worsen in November. The deterioration was driven by falls in output, new orders and employment as the economic climate remained difficult. Amid an uncertain outlook, manufacturers also cut inventory levels and lowered purchasing activity.

Investment goods producers also recorded the steepest fall in staffing levels during November. With the consumer and intermediate market groups also registering reductions in employment, a net fall in total manufacturing payroll numbers was recorded for the second month in succession.

Reduced sales and a subdued economic outlook were reported to have led to the reduction in staffing levels in the latest survey period. Similar factors led to declines in inventories and purchasing activity over the month. The fall in stocks of raw materials and semi-manufactured goods was the steepest in over a year-and-a-half, while input buying was pared to the steepest degree since April 2011.

Watch Japan's Current Account and the Yen

On November 12, in Japan Plunges Into Deep Recession; GDP Shrinks 3.5% Annualized; Japan Current Account Turns Negative First Time in 30 Years I noted that Japan trade deficit hits record as relations with China poisoned.

Mike Shedlock

Mike Shedlock is a registered investment advisor representative for Sitka Pacific Capital Management.