Kenya’s private sector recorded a marginal growth in May, with output and new orders rising solidly and fastest in seven months amid loosened travel restrictions.
The latest Stanbic Bank Kenya Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) Survey posted 52.5. The index was up 11 points – the highest in four months, albeit signaling only a moderate improvement in operating conditions.
Readings above 50 signal an improvement in business conditions on the previous month, while readings below 50 show a deterioration. PMI reading fell below the 50.0 value in April.
The survey panel attributed the expansion to relaxation of measures on curfews and travel between counties. Firms also reported an increase in client orders. The rate of output growth was the quickest since January, with rebounds seen in the agriculture, services and wholesale and retail sectors.
Among the restrictions that were lifted include free movement into and out of Nairobi, Mombasa, and Kilifi and Mandera counties as well as curfew extensions from 8pm to 10 pm.
The survey indicates that due to easing of travel bans, output and employment both rose to the strongest degrees since January. Equally job creation returned in the latest survey period as a result of a strong increase in workloads.
Rising demand in the private sector economy led companies to expand their workforce numbers for the seventh time in eight months in May. Although modest, the pace of job creation was the quickest recorded since January.
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