UK Manufacturing Growth Eases Recession Fears

02 April 2012 14:00 - Jack Stupple

    



UK Manufacturing Growth Eases Recession Fears

The Markit/CIPS manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), an indicator designed to measure the health of the manufacturing industry, rose to 52.1 from 51.5 in February showing that the sector grew at its fastest pace for ten months. The index which combines output, orders and employment in the sector came in above the 50 mark which separates contraction from expansion. This measure was also better than economics had forecasted as they had expected expansion in the sector to slow in March to 50.7. A rise in demand for consumer goods from the UK suggested a possible rise in consumer spending at home. Many are saying that the manufacturing improvement in March suggests that the recovery in the industrial sector still has some momentum.

New exports orders also rose at their quickest pace for a year, after falling the previous month, reinforcing hopes that Britain’s trade position will make a positive contribution to growth in the coming months. However, exporters are having to look into markets further afield as conditions in Europe still remain slow.

Rob Dobson, senior economist at Markit said, “UK manufacturing has made a brighter than expected start to 2012, with PMI data pointing to output growth of around 0.3% in the first quarter.” He added, “This is obviously nowhere near a strong pace, but it is at least sufficient to prevent the sector from remaining a drag on broader GDP growth.

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Related Links :
Purchasing Managers’ Index - News Release: March 2012
HM Treasury - GDP: a user's guide
Economic Calendar - Scheduled Economic Events
Markit Economics - Press Releases
Latest News - Regular News Updates

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