02/02/2024 12:27 PM

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 2 (Bernama) -- Malaysia’s exports of goods are expected to rebound and grow at +5.2 per cent this year from a contraction of -8.0 per cent in 2023, benefiting from the recovery in global trade and production activities, said MIDF Research.

In a note today, it said that optimism among manufacturers improved slightly from December 2023, and local producers continued to expect demand to improve. 

S&P Global reported yesterday that Malaysian manufacturers picked up slightly in January 2024 from that seen last December, amid signs of demand improvement.

The seasonally adjusted S&P Global Malaysia Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) posted 49.0 in January, up from 47.9 in December and the highest since September 2022, recording a 16-month high.

Accordingly, the latest reading suggests that last year’s downturn is losing momentum and sets the Malaysian manufacturing sector on course for a gradual recovery.

Commenting on this, MIDF Research said factory activities in Malaysia declined last month but at the slowest pace in 19 months.

“The higher PMI (but still below 50) indicates the declines in output, new orders and exports were slower.

“Local manufacturers also indicated a slower reduction in backlogs, which may suggest growing pressures on firms’ capacity amid slower fall in new orders,” it said in a research note.

On top of that, price pressures also eased as easing cost pressures led to a slower rise in selling prices; all these were in line with the recent trends in producer and consumer prices.

Meanwhile, the United States ISM Manufacturing PMI rose to 49.1 in January 2024 from December 2023’s 47.1, with new orders returning to growth.

For China, despite the Caixin Manufacturing PMI remaining at 50.8 in January 2024, manufacturing activities remained expansionary for the third month in a row.

Regional countries like Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, Taiwan and South Korea also reported higher readings last month. 


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