Doha, Qatar: Qatar’s non-energy private sector continued to record an improvement in business conditions towards the end of 2023, according to the latest Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) survey data from Qatar Financial Centre (QFC).
Moreover, the rates of expansion in output and new business accelerated since October.
The rise in the latter was sufficient to generate an increase in the level of outstanding business for the first time in over a year, despite a further rise in employment. Financial services remained at the forefront of private sector growth in the latest period.
The Qatar PMI indices are compiled from survey responses from a panel of around 450 private sector companies. The panel covers the manufacturing, construction, wholesale, retail, and services sectors, and reflects the structure of the non-energy economy according to official national accounts data.
The headline Qatar Financial Centre PMI is a composite single-figure indicator of non-energy private sector performance. It is derived from indicators for new orders, output, employment, suppliers’ delivery times and stocks of purchases.
The PMI registered 51.5 in November, up from 50.8 in October. This signalled a tenth successive month-on-month improvement in business conditions, and the first acceleration in growth since July.
Total business activity among Qatari non-energy private sector firms rose further in November. Output has risen every month since July 2020, except for a brief correction in January following the conclusion of the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022. The overall rate of expansion accelerated Yousuf Mohamed Al Jaida (pictured), Chief Executive Officer, QFC Authority commented: “The rise in the headline PMI is welcome news towards the end of 2023, reflecting faster rates of expansion in both new business and output. Financial services in particular remains a bright spot. The PMI is currently trending at 52.6 in 2023 so far, representing a softer rate of economic growth compared with last year during the lead-up to the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, but still above its long-run trend of 52.3.
“November’s rise in outstanding business, the first in over a year, suggests that companies are increasingly busy. This will spur further investment as customer numbers rise and companies bring improved products and services to the market. Higher backlogs in November were accompanied by increased staffing, purchasing and input stocks.”
“Inflationary pressures remain manageable, with only a slight rise in input prices and broadly stable charges in the latest period.”since October, with manufacturing posting the fastest growth.
New business increased for the tenth successive month in November, with strong sales at goods producers and construction firms in particular.
The overall rate of expansion accelerated for only the second time in six months.
Qatari financial services companies recorded another increase in total business activity in November.
The seasonally adjusted Financial Services Business Activity Index posted 54.7, still comfortably above the overall private sector figure of 52.5 albeit the lowest in over two years.
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