UAE non-oil business growth declines in February

03 Mar 2015

(MENAFN) Business activity growth in the UAE non-oil private sector decreased to a five-month low in February but remained strong and above the average for 2014, a corporate survey showed, The National reported.

The seasonally adjusted HSBC UAE Purchasing Managers’ Index, which measures the manufacturing and services sectors, declined to 58.1 points last month from 59.3 in January. The 50-point level separates growth from contraction in the survey of 400 firms.

Output growth reduced to 64.3 points from 65.5 points, while new order growth dropped by a much larger margin, to an 18-month low of 63.3 from 67.9. Growth in new export orders hit a four-month low but remained above the average for the series, and respondents reported healthy demand from Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

“The rates of expansion slowed since January. Nonetheless, the outlook for the UAE remains bright, with employment rising at a faster pace and cost pressures easing as a result of lower fuel prices,” an economist at data provider Markit said.

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