Date: July 02 2012
Australia's manufacturing activity contracted for a fourth straight month in June, hit by a high dollar and a slump in residential and commercial construction, a private survey showed today.
The Australian Industry Group/PriceWaterhouseCoopers performance of manufacturing index (PMI) rose 4.8 points to 47.2 in June, but still remained below the 50-point level that marks the threshold between contraction and expansion.
AIG Chief Executive Innes Willox said concerns over the impact of a carbon tax, which comes into effect this month also weighed on the sector.
Australia yesterday joined a growing number of nations to impose a price on carbon emissions across its $1.4 trillion annual economy. The country's biggest polluters will initially pay $23 per tonne of carbon dioxide emitted, more than twice the cost of carbon pollution in the European Union, currently trading around 8.15 euros ($10) a tonne.
Still, there were signs of improvement in the survey. The index of production bounced 8.8 points to 47.5 in June, while that for employment rose 5.8 points to 48.8 and new orders firmed 5.6 points to 46.2.
Sectors benefiting in June included clothing & footwear; paper, printing & publishing; transport equipment; and machinery & equipment.
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