Wednesday, April 01, 2009
No longer sliding so fast
Posted by David Smith at 10:00 AM
Category: Thoughts and responses

Since the banking convulsions of last Sepember and October, pretty well every indicator has been pointing down. Now we are getting the first indications that the pace of decline may be slowing. The March CIPS/Markit purchasing managers' index for manufacturing, up from 34.9 to a five-month high of 39.1, is still consistent with falling output, but at a somewhat gentler pace than before.

Also today, Bank of England figures showed that housing equity withdrawal in the fourth quarter was negative by 8 billion, or 3.3% of post-tax income. The days when housing provided a boost to income are over, at least for now, though most housing equity withdrawal was always in the form of older people selling up on retirement. The release is here.