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UK Manufacturing PMI at 34-month low in February

Staff writer ▼ | March 2, 2016
February saw the rate of expansion in the UK manufacturing sector slow back towards the stagnation mark.
UK Manufacturing
Britain   Markit/CIPS UK Manufacturing PMI
Output growth eased sharply, as levels of incoming new business showed littlemovement on one month earlier. The slowdown was also reflected in the labour market, with job losses registered for the second straight month.

At 50.8 in February, down from 52.9 in January, the seasonally adjusted Markit/CIPS Purchasing Manager's Index (PMI) posted its lowest reading since April 2013 – the first month of the current 35-month sequence of expansion.

The growth rate of manufacturing production slumped to a seven-month low in February, led by sharp decelerations in the consumer and investment goods sectors.

Both the capital and consumer goods industries saw levels of total new business decline in February, reflecting subdued trends in domestic and foreign demand. The intermediate goods sector saw new order volumes tick higher. Subsequently, output growth in this category slowed less sharply than at consumer and investment goods producers.

The level of new export business placed with UK manufacturers declined for the second straight month in February. Companies reported weaker order inflows from Brazil, mainland Europe, Russia and the USA.

Manufacturing employment fell for the second successive month in February, although the rate of reduction was only mild. Job cuts were registered in both the consumer and investment goods categories. Intermediate goods producers reported a negligible increase in headcounts.