The UK's manufacturing purchasing managers' index perked up in June, rising from 45.9 to 48.6. But it still points to a contracting sector. This is Markit's summary
"Conditions in the UK manufacturing sector remained fragile in June. Although output volumes recouped some of the losses incurred in the previous month, demand remained weak and job losses continued. On a slightly brighter note, cost pressures fell sharply, with average input prices declining at the fastest pace since May 2009.
"At 48.6 in June, up from May’s three-year low of 45.9, the seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS Purchasing Manager’s Index® (PMI®) remained below the neutral 50.0 mark for the second consecutive month. Over Q2 2012 as a whole, the average PMI reading (48.2) was the weakest since Q2 2009.
"June saw manufacturing production rise for the sixth time in the past seven months, but only following a solid contraction during May. The underlying outlook remained subdued overall, as companies reported that output volumes had been underpinned by a marked reduction in backlogs of work. In contrast, new order intakes fell further."