MEXICO CITY, March 3 (Reuters) - Mexico’s manufacturing sector sentiment eased in February off a one-year high, a survey showed on Monday signaling continued headwinds for a tepid recovery in Latin America’s No. 2 economy.
The HSBC Mexico Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index cooled to 52.0 in February, after adjusting for seasonal variation, from 54.0 in January.
A reading above 50 signals expansion, while a lower reading points to contraction.
Readings of both new orders and output posted weaker rates of expansion, while backlogs of work declined for the fourth time in the past five months.
“This result suggests growth moderation in the manufacturing sector, which is consistent with the latest weak exports results,” said Sergio Martin, chief economist at HSBC in Mexico.
Data last week showed Mexican factory exports fell in January for the fifth month in a row, signaling slack demand from the United States for local goods.
Most of Mexico’s exports are manufactured goods, and nearly 80 percent of them are sent to the United States, which has seen its own factories hurt by bad weather early this year.
The PMI index, compiled by Markit, is composed of five sub-indices tracking changes in new orders, output, employment, suppliers’ delivery times and stocks of raw materials and finished goods.