Despite a fall in growth, UK manufacturing activity is on the increase. This is according to data published in the latest Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI).
The figures show that production has slowed, but new orders for both the domestic and foreign markets are on the rise, ensuring that order books remain healthy and manufacturing confidence stays strong.
The increase in activity can be seen as an indicator of the continued good shape the manufacturing sector is in, with close to 56 per cent of companies forecasting increased output over the next 12 months.
This is in contrast to 6 per cent of companies that are anticipating a decline.
Manufacturing is also bucking a trend with regards to employment. Whereas recent unemployment figures have shown a rise, manufacturers are looking to increase their workforces to help handle the increased activity. Job creation within the sector has risen for the 19th consecutive month, demonstrating the optimism that is prevalent throughout the industry.
Meanwhile, the reduction in growth has been blamed on the depreciation of the pound and an overall slowdown across the Eurozone.
A spokesman for Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking said that while there was still some way to go before the UK caught up with its G7 counterparts, steps were being taken to make this happen by “investing in automation and exploring the opportunities presented by Industry 4.0.”
“Many are using specialist asset finance facilities to invest in equipment, protecting their working capital which can be used to support growth opportunities.”
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