UK manufacturing sector still growing

The UK manufacturing sector continued to grow in April despite technical recession returning to the overall economy, according to the latest Markit/CIPS purchasing managers’ index (PMI).

Its headline figure was 50.5 for April, dropping from 51.9 in March. However any figure above 50 indicates an expansion in the sector, as April was the fifth consecutive month of growth in the sector.

The slight slowdown was partly blamed in a drop in new orders.

Chief economist at EEF Manufacturers Organisation felt the index reading showed mixed news: “The good news is that manufacturing clocked up a fifth straight rise, whilst cost pressures have eased a little and some firms are still recruiting"

“The bad is that ever-present eurozone woes are still bearing down on the short term outlook, with some suggestion of renewed downward pressure on export orders over the past month", he concluded.

The manufacturing sector accounts for approximately 11% of UK economic activity.