National industry

Industrial production down by 0.7% in February, following nine months of increase

Section: Economic Statistics | Cristiane Crelier

April 01, 2021 09h00 AM | Last Updated: April 06, 2021 01h30 AM

Industrial production drops in 14 of the 26 subsectors surveyed - Photo: Camila Domingues/Piratini Palace

National industrial production recorded a 0.7% decrease in February from the previous month, interrupting a sequence of nine months of increase. the sector is now 13.6% below the record level reached in May 2011 and 2.8% above the pre-pandemic level (February 2020). The sector is now 13.6% below the level of May 2011 and 2.8% above the pre-pandemic level (February 2020). In the year, industry had a cumulative increase of 1.3% and, in 12 months, a decrease of 4.2%. Data comes from the Monthly Survey of Industry (PIM), released today (1) by the IBGE.

“We have observed a change in industry indexes in the last few months. Although posive, they were on a downward trend, pointing to decline,” says André Macedo, manager of the survey. 

He highlights that, in January, there had been a reduction of positive rates among activities and, in February, there was a predominance of negative rates.

“Three of the four major economic categories surveyed and 14 of the 26 subsectors surveyed were negative in February, that is, only 12 activities recorded positive rates,” Mr. Macedo highlights.

“The subsector of vehicles has been severely affected by the lack of inputs and raw material. Even so, the production of trucks has had positive results. However, cars and car pieces had pushed the index downwards,” André Macedo says.

According to the researcher, besides insufficient supply of raw material, the increased number of unemployed persons, the rise of prices, difficulties in the internationa market adn the interruption of the emergency finantial aid in the end of the year have affected the production chain.

Among the major economic categories, durable consumer goods (-4.6%) recorded its biggest decrease in February, being the second consecutive month with decrease in production and a cumulative index in the period (-5.5%). But the segments of capital goods (-1.5%), which had a cumulative increase of 147.1% for nine months overall, and semi-durable and non-durable goods (-0.3%), which increased by 1.7% in the previous month, also recorded negative rates in the month. The only positive rate was that of intermediate goods.

Industry grew 0.4% from February 2020

Against the same month a year ago, industry increased by 0.4% in February 2021, but increase was less significant than in the five consecutive months of positive rates. It is worth mentioning that February 2021 (18 days had the same number of working days as the same month a year ago.

In this comparison, results were positive in two of the four major economic categories, and in 17 of the 26 subsectors surveyed. The main influences on the industry overall were recorded by machnery and equipment (18.5%), metal products (10.6%), non-metallic mineral products (9.7%) and other chemicals (8.1%).

Among major categories, capital goods (16.1%) recorded, in February 2021, the most significant increase from February 2020. The segment of intermediate goods (0.5%) also recorded an increase above the average of industry (0.4%). On the other hand, production of durable consumer goods (-8.4%) and of semi-durable and non-durable consumer goods (-1.6%) recorded negative rates.

The Monthly Survey of Industry - Physical Production - Brazil has produced short-term indicators since the 1970's relative to the performance of real products in mining and quarrying and manufacturing industry.