Japan’s PMI Services for November was finalized at 50.8, down from October’s 51.6, marking the weakest reading since November 2022. PMI Composite also fell to 49.6, down from 50.5 in the previous month, indicating the first contraction since December 2022.
Trevor Balchin, Economics Director at S&P Global Market Intelligence, contextualized these numbers, stating, “November data signalled a further loss of momentum in the services sector, but this should be viewed in the context of a year of strong growth.” He highlighted that Business Activity Index for 2023 is trending at 53.7, the highest annual reading since the survey’s inception in 2007.
Balchin also pointed out several positive aspects in the latest survey. The rise in new business, sustained employment growth, and the increase in outstanding work indicate ongoing economic activity. Furthermore, the 12-month outlook for activity improved and was “among the strongest on record”. Despite these optimistic signs, price pressures in November eased but remained above long-term trends.