Purchasing Managers Index drops in wake of election

December 5, 2016

DETROIT—The Southeast Michigan Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) lost more than 10 points, dropping to 57.0 for November 2016; the three-month average fell to 61.4. Despite the steep decline, a PMI above 50 is considered an indication of an expanding economy.

“This month’s drop may be a result of post-election nervousness in the marketplace, but the PMI value of 57.0 is still a strong showing of economic vitality,” said Tim Butler, associate professor of global supply chain management in Wayne State University’s Mike Ilitch School of Business, who interpreted this month’s results. “The lower number indicates that respondents are less optimistic than they were previously, but they remain confident in the economic strength of Southeast Michigan.”

Fewer respondents — only about 20% compared to last month’s 31% — predict that the economy will become less stable over the next six months.

There were three precipitous drops in the specific indexes which comprise the PMI, although the November score is still relatively healthy. New Orders fell from 70.6 to 58.3; Production dropped from 73.5 to 58.3; and Employment declined from 75.0 to 62.5. No commodities were identified as being down in price; paper was reportedly up in price.

“PMI dropped down to 57.0, which seems more realistic, but it may also reflect people’s perception of the impact of the election on their own organization,” said Kenneth Doherty, assistant vice president of procurement and strategic sourcing at WSU and an Institute for Supply Management board member. “The upcoming holidays play a role as well. Customer spending slowed midyear but is now picking up.”

The Southeast Michigan Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) is a research partnership between Wayne State University’s Mike Ilitch School of Business and the Institute for Supply Management – Southeast Michigan.

The full report can be found at                                                            

The Institute for Supply Management – Southeast Michigan serves its members as an affiliate of the Institute for Supply Management by providing superior opportunities for education, networking, and career enhancement as a means of advancing and promoting the leading edge practices and profession of purchasing and supply management. Visit their website at                                                   

The Wayne State University Mike Ilitch School of Business prepares students for challenging and rewarding careers, advances the boundaries of scholarly and practitioner knowledge, and enhances the economic vitality of the city of Detroit, the state of Michigan and beyond through its programs, research and community engagement. Established in 1946, the business school was renamed in 2015 in recognition of a $40 million gift from Mike and Marian Ilitch. Thanks to this lead investment, a new state-of-the-art building is slated to open in the heart of the District Detroit in 2018, and entrepreneurial programming and collaboration with city businesses are expanding. For more information, visit