BRICS roar their way out of global slowdown

 
Ben Southwood
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BUSINESS activity increased sharply in Brazil, Russia, India and China in January, banishing fears the world was set for an economic slowdown.

Chinese output increased at its fastest rate for two years, according to Markit’s purchasing managers’ index (PMI) business survey, which rose from 51.8 in December to 53.5 in January – where 50 indicates no change.

India saw a 45th month of private sector output growth, according to another Markit release, as its services PMI climbed to 57.5, a 12-month high, from 55.6 in December. Its overall PMI also remained firmly in expansion territory, flat at 56.3.

Russia continued the run of impressive figures with its 29th straight month of private sector service activity, according to its PMI, which improved from 54.1 in December to 54.8 in January.

And Brazil also saw its composite PMI jump, from 53.2 to 54.9, again showing not just output growth, but output growing at a faster pace – in Brazil’s case the fastest for 11 months.

And upbeat figures were not limited to the BRICs, with the United Arab Emirates, Hong Kong and Japan also enjoying expansion.