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UK manufacturing sector sees five-month high

May 1, 2014

imagesMXWEV9AJGrowth of sector in 2Q2014 higher than previous forecasts and continues to exceed expectations in April.

The Guardian reported on the continuing growth of the UK’s manufacturing sector during the second quarter of 2014 (2Q2014), with growth exceeding expectations in April leading to the pound reaching “a near five-year high” against the dollar at $1.6921 (€1.219).

The sector, which accounts for 10 percent of the country’s economy, has seen “a strong rise in output, new orders and employment”; while the headline index of the Marki/CIPS manufacturing PMI increased to a five-month high of 57.3 in April from 55.8 in March – higher than economists’ predictions of 55.4. A reading of 50 or more indicates growth.

Manufacturers that took part in the PMI survey indicated that they had “increased the rate at which they hired new workers for a twelfth consecutive month”, meeting higher demand by increasing factory capacity, with Rob Dobson, Senior Economist at Markit, stating that this “suggested around 10,000 jobs were being created” every month in the sector.

Dobson added: “UK manufacturing continued its surging start to 2014, with output growth accelerating in April to a level among the highest signalled over the past two decades. Supporting these efforts are a strong domestic market and improving global economic conditions.”

Jonathan Loynes, Chief European Economist at Capital Economics, commented that the higher than expected PMI indicated “further encouraging evidence of a favourable rebalancing of the UK’s economic recovery”; with the chancellor targeting manufacturing and exports in his March budget.

The Recycler has reported on the UK manufacturing sector’s growth over the past year, with strong growth recorded at the end of 2013 and the sector experiencing its fastest growth for a year last June.

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