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Economy

Factory slump continues for eighth straight month as output falls in October

The country’s manufacturing product contracted for the eighth straight month in October, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported earlier this morning.

Preliminary results of the PSA’s Monthly Integrated Survey of Selected Industries showed factory output, as measured by the Volume of Production Index, declined by 11.3% year on year in October.

The latest result is faster than the revised 8.6% drop in September and the five-percent contraction recorded in the same month last year. It also marked the steepest decline since the 13.4% drop in July.

Factory output has been declining since March.

Year to date, factory output shrank by 11.9% on average versus the 8.5% slump recorded in 2019’s comparable 10 months.

The PSA attributed the faster decline in October to reductions in the indices of 15 industry groups led by petroleum products (-99.1%), printing (-53.4%), and tobacco products (-48.7%).

Average capacity utilization — the extent to which industry resources are used in the production of goods — averaged 67.2% from 69.2% the previous month. Only seven of the 20 sectors registered capacity utilization rates of at least 80%. – Marissa Mae M. Ramos

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