UK trade deficit in August – 2nd highest on record

The UK’s deficit on trade in goods and services increased to £4.2bn in August, from £1.7bn in July, according to the Office for National Statistics. This was the second highest figure on record for the total trade deficit. Our trade in goods deficit also widened to £9.8bn from £7.3bn in July. This was due to a drop in exports and … Continue reading

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Chinese manufacturing continues to contract

It is now 11 months in a row that China has seen a contraction in this major sector. The Flash China manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) produced by the bank HSBC, and eagerly awaited in economic circles, shows that the nine-month low of 47.6 in August, reached 47.8 mid way through September. The cause for concern is that any figure … Continue reading

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Surprising rebound in UK manufacturing

Good news for the UK manufacturing sector. Output expanded in January at the fastest rate since March 2011. There was an increase in new orders together with a stabilisation in employment. Also, average input prices fell for the third month running causing an easing in the cost pressures which had been facing the sector. These findings are from the Markit/CIPS … Continue reading

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Manufacturing falls, and trade gap worsens

On top of the looting and mayhem, the UK economy is suddenly looking very flat indeed. UK manufacturing output fell by 0.4% in June according to figures from the Office for National Statistics. This compares with an increase of 1.8% in May which had led many analysts to expect manufacturing would have risen by about 0.2% in June. There is … Continue reading

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What Roger Bootle thinks about UK manufacturing

Roger Bootle, Managing Director of Capital Economics, shared his thoughts in an article in The Telegraph today. He examines the question: “Does manufacturing matter?” To which he answers ‘yes’. And to the question: ”given that we’ve got so little of it left, aren’t we essentially finished?” he answers ‘no’.   UK manufacturing’ share of GDP has fallen from over 30% … Continue reading

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UK Growth is “on a plateau”

Is the UK economy grinding to a halt? Latest figures show that GDP in the first quarter of 2011 grew at only 0.5%. This follows on from a decline of 0.5% in the last quarter of 2010, which suggests that overall the economy has stood still for the past six months. As Joe Grice, chief economist for the ONS put … Continue reading

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UK car production up by nearly thirty per cent

There was a sharp rise in car production last year, with 1.27 million cars being produced, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). This was a rise of 27.8% on 2009. This is a major improvement for the industry, although output is not yet back up to the level it was before the recession. When we add … Continue reading

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More positive signs from manufacturing

Manufacturing output grew by 0.6% in October, according to the Office for National Statistics, and compares well with the 0.2% seen in September. In fact, the October increase is the biggest monthly rise since March. This figure was approximately twice that which analysts had been prediction. This means that in the three months to October, manufacturing grew by 5.6%, compared … Continue reading

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Big recovery in UK manufacturing

Manufacturing was shown to have reached a sixteen-year high, according to the Markit/CIPS purchasing managers’ index (PMI), which has just been published. The seasonally adjusted UK manufacturing PMI rose to 58.0 in November, its highest level since September 1994, and compares with a figure of 55.4 in October. The PMI figure has now been above the 50.0 neutral mark for … Continue reading

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Producer prices continue to moderate in UK

Producer prices are measured in two ways. Firstly, there are input prices which is a measure of those intermediate goods and raw materials which manufacturers need to produce their finished products. And secondly, output prices or ‘factory gate inflation’ which measures the price of finished goods as they leave the factory. In August, figures just published by the Office for … Continue reading

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