Manufacturing output in the UK reached a seven-month high of 57.1 for April, reflecting strong industrial sector growth of production for the 22nd consecutive month, according to the CIPS/RBS Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) released Tuesday.
According to British manufacturing companies surveyed, the higher output can be attributed to an increase in new work orders, efforts to reduce outstanding business and improvements in plant efficiency.
Although output accelerated, the PMI fell slightly to a three-month low of 53.9. The report stated that this decline is primarily the result of a weaker trend in the stocks of purchases component, which signaled the sharpest contraction in inventories for almost two years.
While the New Orders Index fell slightly to 56.1 for a second month in a row, the seasonally-adjusted New Orders Index still was above the no-change mark of 50.0. Manufacturers reported that successful product launches and improved marketing activities were responsible for the rise in new orders received, the PMI noted.
New Export Orders rose for the eighth month in a row due to improved demand from Europe, Asia and Africa, although the rate of growth eased to its lowest since January, the PMI showed.
UK manufacturing employment was up again in April, as it has been since the beginning of the year, although the rate of jobs growth was only marginal and the weakest during the period, the statistics showed.
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