Tuesday, January 03, 2012
Good news from UK manufacturing
Posted by David Smith at 11:00 AM
Category: Thoughts and responses

Everybody expected a downbeat reading from the UK manufacturing purchasing managers' index but it provided a new year boost by surprising on the upside. The index rose from 47.7 in November to 49.6 in December, just below the 50 level consistent with expansion.

Markit, which compiles the data, describes it as stabilisation rather than growth. These days maybe stabilisation is the new growth.

It said: "The UK manufacturing sector showed signs of stabilisation at the end of 2011. Production was broadly unchanged in December, following back-to-back contractions, and the rate of decline in new orders slowed as the trend in new exports strengthened.

"Weakness was mainly centred on the intermediate goods sector, as growth of output and new orders was recorded at both consumer and investment goods producers." Its release is here.