Kickstart the Kitkat machine
Global manufacturing inventories are falling for the first time in two years. This suggests the industrial cycle could be bottoming out.
There has been a lot of destocking of chocolates here at LGIM's offices. Several people brought some in after easter. And we (or mainly I!) have been merrily munching away at the stockpile. We're now running low. To maintain blood sugar levels we'll have to order in some new supplies.
This is great news for chocolate manufacturers as they will have to kickstart the KitKat machines. But my Smartie-pants analysis suggests the rest of the manufacturing sector should receive a Boost too.
It hasn’t been a Picnic for manufacturers over the past year. We noted a sharp build-up of unsolved manufacturing inventories last summer and this told us something was going wrong. We thought the world economy would accelerate after the ‘tax cut’ from lower oil prices. But this analysis proved Flakey. The gains in OECD consumer spending was more than offset by a collapse in energy-related capex and a credit Crunch(ie) in emerging economies.
No Snickering at the back, but I think the manufacturing sector is now bottoming out. Our proprietary estimate of global manufacturing inventories has fallen for two consecutive months – this is the first decline in around two years.
A decline in inventories suggests production has finally been cut below sales and unless production increases, inventories could fall too low.
Manufacturing data dominate our Bloomberg screens and newspaper articles. Disappointing data readings over the past year have led to ‘economic surprise’ indices turning negative. Perhaps we’ll now see Kinder Surprises.