The majority of sectors achieved growth of output at the start of the second half of 2020, as governments continued to ease restrictions brought in to contain the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
Out of 21 sectors monitored, 15 recorded expansion in July, up from four in June. Automobiles & auto parts registered the fastest rate of growth, with the strongest rise in production since November 2017.
Chemicals was ranked second, with growth at a 31-month high, followed by pharmaceuticals & biotechnology which saw the strongest expansion since December 2018. Three manufacturing sectors completed the top six – household & personal use products, construction materials and forestry & paper products. Healthcare services and banks were the fastest-growing pure service sectors.
Six sectors registered further declines in output in July. Other financials displaced technology equipment as the fastestcontracting sector, followed by tourism & recreation.
The strongest rate of job shedding was in metals & mining, followed by automobiles & auto parts.