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Industry Reports - Survey of Australian Manufacturing

Survey of Australian Manufacturing

The PricewaterhouseCoopers and Australian Industry Group March 2003 quarter report lists several factors that could offset some of the strong positive influence of domestic demand on the manufacturing sector.

These include the hostilities in Iraq, a volatile oil price, and the delayed impact of drought.

More than a quarter of the 880 manufacturing firms surveyed, reported an increase in production for the March quarter, with activity strongest in construction material and fabricated metal products, transport equipment, and chemicals, petroleum and coal products.

However, the softer activity consumer-based sectors, including food, beverages, clothing and footwear, kept the overall March quarter result lower than the most recent peak, in June 2002.

The report also reveals softer growth in new orders, employment and investment, and a deterioration in profit trends – the lowest since December 2001 - due to significant rises in input costs.

Full March quarter survey results are available from www.aigroup.asn.au.

Applications are due by March 28.

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