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Informations Rapides · 23 September 2021 · n° 239
Informations rapidesIn September 2021, the business climate in industry has decreasedMonthly business survey (goods-producing industries) - September 2021

According to the industry business managers surveyed in September 2021, the business climate has decreased compared to the previous month. At 106, the composite indicator of the sector has lost four points but remains above its average (100). Its decrease is first and foremost explained by the marked drop in the balances of opinion on past production and on foreign order-books. The fall in the balance on expected production has also contributed to it. Only the general production prospects in industry have contributed positively to the change in the business climate.

Informations rapides
No 239
Paru le : Paru le 23/09/2021
Prochaine parution le : 24/11/2021 at 08:45 - November 2021

According to the industry business managers surveyed in September 2021, the business climate has decreased compared to the previous month. At 106, the composite indicator of the sector has lost four points but remains above its average (100). Its decrease is first and foremost explained by the marked drop in the balances of opinion on past production and on foreign order-books. The fall in the balance on expected production has also contributed to it. Only the general production prospects in industry have contributed positively to the change in the business climate.

Business climate in manufacturing - Composite indicator

Business climate in manufacturing - Composite indicator
Business climate in manufacturing - Composite indicator
2005-01 103.4
2005-02 103.2
2005-03 99.8
2005-04 96.7
2005-05 97.1
2005-06 99.1
2005-07 100.2
2005-08 99.7
2005-09 99.0
2005-10 101.2
2005-11 101.1
2005-12 104.2
2006-01 103.2
2006-02 106.7
2006-03 106.4
2006-04 107.9
2006-05 108.9
2006-06 108.7
2006-07 109.0
2006-08 108.6
2006-09 108.2
2006-10 107.3
2006-11 109.7
2006-12 109.3
2007-01 108.4
2007-02 111.8
2007-03 111.4
2007-04 112.0
2007-05 110.1
2007-06 111.3
2007-07 111.5
2007-08 111.0
2007-09 110.6
2007-10 110.0
2007-11 112.3
2007-12 112.5
2008-01 110.6
2008-02 110.4
2008-03 110.0
2008-04 107.5
2008-05 104.2
2008-06 103.5
2008-07 98.9
2008-08 98.2
2008-09 91.7
2008-10 87.2
2008-11 79.9
2008-12 73.5
2009-01 72.7
2009-02 68.7
2009-03 66.7
2009-04 70.7
2009-05 72.5
2009-06 75.1
2009-07 76.6
2009-08 81.0
2009-09 84.1
2009-10 85.3
2009-11 87.7
2009-12 87.6
2010-01 90.3
2010-02 88.8
2010-03 91.3
2010-04 95.1
2010-05 96.6
2010-06 95.8
2010-07 97.3
2010-08 100.5
2010-09 103.0
2010-10 104.2
2010-11 101.9
2010-12 104.2
2011-01 108.8
2011-02 107.0
2011-03 110.2
2011-04 110.2
2011-05 107.3
2011-06 109.9
2011-07 104.9
2011-08 101.4
2011-09 99.3
2011-10 97.5
2011-11 97.7
2011-12 94.8
2012-01 95.0
2012-02 95.0
2012-03 96.6
2012-04 95.7
2012-05 94.9
2012-06 93.3
2012-07 91.2
2012-08 93.0
2012-09 92.8
2012-10 87.2
2012-11 91.8
2012-12 91.0
2013-01 90.0
2013-02 90.7
2013-03 90.7
2013-04 87.8
2013-05 92.2
2013-06 92.8
2013-07 94.9
2013-08 98.6
2013-09 96.0
2013-10 98.0
2013-11 98.2
2013-12 99.4
2014-01 99.7
2014-02 98.4
2014-03 100.9
2014-04 100.4
2014-05 98.4
2014-06 96.7
2014-07 96.4
2014-08 96.7
2014-09 97.0
2014-10 97.5
2014-11 99.0
2014-12 98.9
2015-01 98.9
2015-02 98.6
2015-03 99.1
2015-04 101.6
2015-05 101.9
2015-06 100.4
2015-07 101.6
2015-08 103.7
2015-09 104.9
2015-10 103.3
2015-11 102.4
2015-12 102.7
2016-01 102.9
2016-02 103.1
2016-03 102.7
2016-04 104.8
2016-05 104.4
2016-06 101.6
2016-07 101.7
2016-08 101.7
2016-09 103.5
2016-10 102.3
2016-11 102.2
2016-12 105.8
2017-01 106.1
2017-02 106.8
2017-03 105.7
2017-04 108.6
2017-05 108.8
2017-06 109.0
2017-07 108.1
2017-08 110.1
2017-09 111.0
2017-10 111.1
2017-11 111.6
2017-12 111.9
2018-01 113.8
2018-02 112.6
2018-03 110.6
2018-04 110.5
2018-05 109.9
2018-06 109.7
2018-07 108.4
2018-08 108.8
2018-09 107.2
2018-10 104.3
2018-11 105.2
2018-12 103.7
2019-01 103.6
2019-02 103.6
2019-03 103.5
2019-04 101.4
2019-05 103.9
2019-06 101.9
2019-07 101.3
2019-08 102.2
2019-09 101.6
2019-10 99.6
2019-11 102.0
2019-12 99.5
2020-01 102.8
2020-02 101.1
2020-03 97.5
2020-04 67.0
2020-05 70.5
2020-06 77.6
2020-07 81.9
2020-08 91.6
2020-09 94.3
2020-10 94.2
2020-11 92.0
2020-12 95.4
2021-01 96.5
2021-02 98.3
2021-03 98.6
2021-04 103.6
2021-05 107.1
2021-06 107.9
2021-07 109.3
2021-08 109.6
2021-09 106.3

Business climate in manufacturing - Composite indicator

  • Source: INSEE

Industrialists’ opinion on manufacturing activity

Balance of opinion, in %, SA
Industrialists’ opinion on manufacturing activity (Balance of opinion, in %, SA)
Ave.* Jun. 21 Jul. 21 Aug. 21 Sep. 21
Manufacturing industry
Composite indicator 100 108 109 110 106
Past production 5 17 16 21 12
Finished-goods inventory 12 3 -6 -1 3
Overall order books -18 -7 -4 -8 -9
Foreign order books -15 -16 -12 -11 -19
Past workforce size -9 -5 -1 -1 -3
Expected workforce size -11 4 6 8 10
Personal production expectations 5 18 19 24 19
General production expectations -8 25 20 16 23
Expected trend in selling prices 2 30 25 26 27
  • * Long-term average since 1976.
  • Source: INSEE - Monthly business tendency survey in industry

The balance of opinion on past production has fallen sharply

In September 2021, the manufacturers’ balances of opinion relative to their past and future production have diminished. The balance on production over the last three months has fallen sharply compared to August, back to its March 2021 level, although above its average. The balance on expected production has also decreased but has remained at a high level.

Conversely, the business managers deem the general production outlook for the good-producing industries to be dynamic. The relative balance of opinion has bounced back in September and stands at a much higher level than usual.

Finally, as many business leaders as in August anticipate a rise in their selling prices over the coming months. The relative balance has been stabilising since July at a very high level, after having surged from January to May 2021.

The balance of opinion on foreign order books has dropped

The manufacturers’ judgment on the level of their overall order-books has been virtually stable this month, after a decrease in August, and has remained well above its average. The balance on the foreign order books has in turn fallen back and has even returned below its average. This balance has slumped in the manufacture of motor vehicles, trailers and semi-trailers especially.

The balance on the finished-goods inventories has increased for the second month in a row: more manufacturers than last month consider the level of their inventories to be greater than the seasonal normal. Nevertheless, this balance has remained well below its average level.

The business managers in manufacturing industry have reported dynamic employment prospects. The balance on the expected variation in the workforce size over the next three months has grown for the fifth month in a row. It has reached a level unseen since 2001. The balance of opinion on the past change in the workforce size does not follow the same path: this balance has slightly deteriorated after having been steady last month. However, it has remained above its average.

The business climate has worsened in most of the sub-branches of manufacturing industry

In the manufacture of transport equipment, the business climate has fallen back quite markedly in September 2021, whereas it had tended to increase since April. It has thus moved further away from its pre-crisis level. This fall stems mainly from the motor vehicles, trailers and semi-trailers industry. There the climate has deteriorated noticeably, dragged down by the sharp contraction in the balances on foreign order books and on expected production. The business climate of the other transport equipment branch has been somewhat weaker than in August, whereas it had been improving slightly over the past five months. It remains very deteriorated.

Likewise, the business climate in machinery and equipment goods industries has declined after having reached a very high level last month. In this branch too, the drop in the balances on foreign order-books and on expected production has weighed down the business climate. This deterioration has been particularly pronounced in the manufacture of computer, electronic and optical products.

In the so-called "other industries", the business climate has weakened a little for the second consecutive month but has remained well above its average. It has worsened in the basic metals and fabricated metal products industry and in the manufacture of textiles, clothing and leather. However, it has improved in the other sub-branches. In the so-called other manufacturing industries sub-branch, which includes the repair and installation of machinery and equipment, the business climate has even reached its highest level since March 2008.

Finally, the business climate of the manufacture of food products and beverages has receded again, though more slightly than in the past two months. It has been especially affected by the large drop in the balance on past production. Nevertheless, at 111, the business climate for this branch has remained well above its average level.

Business climates in a sector-based approach

Business climates in a sector-based approach
(C1) (C3) (C4) (C5)
2011-01 109.1 105.0 105.5 105.0
2011-02 107.4 103.1 100.1 108.1
2011-03 106.6 107.3 106.5 109.4
2011-04 108.9 105.4 106.2 109.7
2011-05 109.6 104.0 105.6 107.4
2011-06 108.3 105.1 109.7 108.6
2011-07 111.2 103.2 104.2 104.7
2011-08 103.3 101.0 102.2 100.3
2011-09 101.7 99.9 99.2 98.1
2011-10 104.3 98.6 100.5 96.4
2011-11 102.0 96.3 102.5 94.2
2011-12 98.2 96.6 100.4 94.6
2012-01 99.6 96.5 95.3 94.1
2012-02 100.3 96.4 94.1 95.9
2012-03 102.2 97.0 103.3 97.1
2012-04 98.9 96.5 94.5 97.7
2012-05 93.3 95.1 95.4 95.9
2012-06 94.9 91.5 96.1 93.7
2012-07 94.5 91.2 95.5 92.4
2012-08 93.6 90.7 95.7 93.6
2012-09 96.6 91.4 97.5 93.7
2012-10 90.9 86.4 96.0 89.5
2012-11 98.1 87.7 93.2 92.3
2012-12 98.7 88.2 92.7 91.9
2013-01 97.5 88.2 92.9 91.4
2013-02 97.9 89.2 94.8 90.3
2013-03 94.0 89.4 94.3 91.3
2013-04 91.7 90.2 93.4 89.3
2013-05 91.4 90.1 95.3 91.9
2013-06 92.6 89.6 95.3 93.3
2013-07 92.3 90.2 99.2 94.9
2013-08 95.4 92.3 101.8 97.0
2013-09 94.8 90.6 98.1 97.1
2013-10 95.4 91.0 104.0 97.6
2013-11 98.1 93.3 102.4 98.6
2013-12 98.4 92.4 100.4 99.1
2014-01 99.4 91.9 102.8 98.6
2014-02 99.1 94.4 98.5 98.2
2014-03 99.8 93.3 101.1 102.3
2014-04 95.8 93.0 103.2 100.1
2014-05 98.0 94.3 98.8 99.4
2014-06 95.6 92.3 98.6 98.5
2014-07 96.9 89.9 99.7 99.0
2014-08 95.3 93.9 98.3 100.5
2014-09 94.4 92.7 101.2 97.2
2014-10 95.5 93.1 97.7 98.4
2014-11 96.0 92.7 100.5 99.7
2014-12 99.0 92.7 100.1 100.1
2015-01 103.2 94.0 102.1 99.7
2015-02 99.4 95.7 101.6 100.1
2015-03 100.6 94.6 105.6 100.1
2015-04 104.5 97.1 107.3 100.5
2015-05 102.0 97.7 105.3 101.4
2015-06 105.0 97.6 105.5 100.8
2015-07 108.6 98.8 105.1 102.7
2015-08 103.2 98.0 108.1 101.4
2015-09 105.5 96.7 109.4 102.4
2015-10 104.3 98.8 108.0 99.7
2015-11 102.2 100.2 108.1 99.4
2015-12 99.7 98.6 108.0 101.6
2016-01 101.7 101.1 108.4 99.4
2016-02 100.2 101.1 109.3 99.8
2016-03 101.4 99.6 106.3 101.1
2016-04 105.8 100.6 109.4 101.2
2016-05 103.3 98.1 106.4 103.7
2016-06 103.0 97.7 106.3 101.4
2016-07 104.4 98.2 105.5 101.6
2016-08 99.2 98.7 104.2 101.3
2016-09 108.9 99.0 105.6 100.4
2016-10 106.6 98.0 106.1 101.1
2016-11 107.8 100.3 102.7 101.4
2016-12 108.5 104.0 104.9 104.7
2017-01 103.9 102.9 107.1 105.3
2017-02 105.5 104.4 106.8 106.2
2017-03 104.1 105.1 105.8 104.7
2017-04 103.7 107.4 106.3 107.7
2017-05 106.0 109.3 105.9 107.0
2017-06 111.7 108.7 105.6 108.3
2017-07 108.8 109.3 108.6 106.6
2017-08 108.7 107.1 108.8 108.1
2017-09 107.4 107.7 109.7 108.4
2017-10 111.0 109.8 108.9 110.2
2017-11 112.3 110.0 109.4 110.9
2017-12 110.8 111.5 110.7 110.5
2018-01 111.2 112.8 112.5 110.8
2018-02 110.1 111.1 112.6 109.8
2018-03 108.7 110.3 111.7 109.3
2018-04 109.2 110.3 112.8 107.5
2018-05 107.9 111.6 108.5 107.5
2018-06 110.4 108.2 110.2 105.6
2018-07 107.7 108.4 106.4 106.3
2018-08 107.8 108.3 106.8 105.6
2018-09 107.1 107.5 105.5 104.7
2018-10 102.4 107.1 104.0 102.8
2018-11 109.5 102.2 104.3 102.8
2018-12 107.5 102.5 102.8 102.5
2019-01 107.6 103.7 103.0 102.1
2019-02 108.3 105.1 101.2 101.2
2019-03 106.3 101.1 103.0 101.5
2019-04 106.4 101.6 101.4 100.9
2019-05 111.8 104.5 102.9 102.1
2019-06 108.8 99.1 101.0 100.6
2019-07 104.5 103.1 99.6 100.3
2019-08 108.4 100.1 101.5 101.5
2019-09 107.9 99.7 101.5 101.3
2019-10 105.4 96.7 100.9 99.0
2019-11 103.9 98.1 105.6 101.0
2019-12 107.6 97.6 99.8 98.1
2020-01 107.6 101.2 106.1 99.5
2020-02 107.7 99.8 100.7 100.3
2020-03 107.1 98.5 96.2 97.4
2020-04 91.8 76.9 73.7 73.6
2020-05 90.4 76.2 76.0 74.3
2020-06 92.8 79.1 77.6 79.1
2020-07 89.4 85.4 80.7 81.5
2020-08 96.3 92.0 91.8 87.8
2020-09 102.5 91.6 92.5 92.6
2020-10 93.7 95.0 91.9 94.8
2020-11 92.6 92.0 90.0 94.9
2020-12 89.8 96.7 88.4 102.0
2021-01 89.7 105.2 88.8 100.6
2021-02 94.2 106.4 91.3 101.6
2021-03 100.7 107.2 85.0 104.3
2021-04 104.4 114.0 89.8 107.3
2021-05 115.3 112.3 91.2 109.8
2021-06 119.0 115.6 90.9 110.7
2021-07 114.8 115.8 93.1 114.1
2021-08 111.7 120.2 93.8 112.5
2021-09 110.7 116.0 89.4 110.7

Business climates in a sector-based approach

  • Legend: (C1): Manufacture of food products and beverages - (C3): Machinery and equipment goods - (C4): Manufacture of transport equipment - (C5): Other manufacturing
  • Source: INSEE

Business climates in a sector-based approach

Average = 100 and standard deviation = 10 since 1990
Business climates in a sector-based approach (Average = 100 and standard deviation = 10 since 1990)
NA* : (A17) et [A38 et A64] Weights** (%) Jul. 21 Aug. 21 Sep. 21
(C1) Man. of food products and beverages 21 115 112 111
(C3) Machinery and equipment goods 11 116 120 116
[CI] Computer, electronic and optical products 3 113 115 109
[CJ] Electrical equipment 3 121 124 120
[CK] Machinery and equipment 5 111 116 115
(C4) Man. of transport equipment 18 93 94 89
[CL1] Motor vehicles, trailers and semi-trailers 9 105 106 100
[CL2] Other transport equipment 10 81 82 81
(C5) Other manufacturing 46 114 112 111
[CB] Textiles, clothing industries, leather and footwear industry 2 123 118 101
[CC] Wood, paper, printing 5 124 115 121
[CE] Chemicals and chemical products 8 113 105 107
[CG] Rubber and plastic products 7 115 108 110
[CH] Basic metals and fabricated metal products 11 106 109 107
[CM] Other manufacturing industries 9 110 116 117
  • * NA: aggregated classification, based on the French classification of activities NAF rév.2.
  • ** Weights used to aggregate sub-sector's balances of opinion.
  • Source: INSEE - Monthly business tendency survey in industry

For further information

A balance of opinion is the difference between the weighted percentage of « above normal » or « increase » answers and the weighted percentage of « below normal » or « decrease » answers.

Since the definitive data of April 2020, the way of correcting non-response has been modified. The usual method was to fill in missing answers by carrying on past answers from non-responding companies. Results are now computed on the sole basis of responding companies.

Answers to this survey have been gathered between 27 August and 20 September 2021.

Additional information (methodology, links, etc.) is available on the “Documentation” tab.

Next issue: 21 October 2021 at 8:45 am.

Pour en savoir plus

A balance of opinion is the difference between the weighted percentage of « above normal » or « increase » answers and the weighted percentage of « below normal » or « decrease » answers.

Since the definitive data of April 2020, the way of correcting non-response has been modified. The usual method was to fill in missing answers by carrying on past answers from non-responding companies. Results are now computed on the sole basis of responding companies.

Answers to this survey have been gathered between 27 August and 20 September 2021.

Additional information (methodology, links, etc.) is available on the “Documentation” tab.

Next issue: 21 October 2021 at 8:45 am.

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