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Robust manufacturing activity seen in the United Kingdom in October
02 November 2017, 01:04 | Gordon Grant
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Closely-watched figures from the IHS Markit/CIPS manufacturing purchasing managers' index (PMI) showed the sector enjoyed a brisk start to the fourth quarter.
"Meanwhile, the output expectations balance - which offers the best correlation with the official data - was unchanged at 56.6, remaining consistent with quarterly manufacturing output growth of around 1%, the same pace as that recorded in Q3".
"The Dutch manufacturing PMI edged further towards an all-time high in October", said Trevor Balchin, director at IHS Markit, which compiles the Netherlands Manufacturing PMI survey.
United Kingdom manufacturing likely cooled during October, according to forecasts for the latest IHS Markit Manufacturing PMI, although sector activity probably remained close to its highest level for more than six years.
The implementation of two big economic reforms - demonetisation last year and the rollout of GST in July 1 this year - has disrupted business activity and consumer spending.
Manufacturing production rose for the 14 month running in September.
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Production and new order volumes benefited from strong domestic demand and rising export inflows, while price pressures grew as input costs rose at the fastest pace in seven months to lead to the steepest rate of selling price inflation since April. This was despite solid job creation in October. Governor Mark Carney has warned of a supply squeeze related to Brexit that will reduce potential growth and increase the risk of the economy overheating.
Employment levels reached their highest rate in 40 months.
She also highlighted a positive aspect, saying that the labour market continued to improve, with manufacturers further increasing staffing, and October's activity similar to the pace seen in September's 59-month high. Responses from the latest survey were collected between October 12-26.
"Importantly, coming ahead of the MPC's November meeting, indications of persistent price and capacity pressures would support the hawk's view that the time is right for a rate rise".
Economist Andrew Wishart at Capital Economics said the recent rise in oil prices was the cause of input prices picking up. Subsequently, companies reportedly raised their output prices to pass on a greater cost burden to clients and protect their profit margins.
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