Industrial output set to increase next quarter, says CBI

Wednesday 27 March 2013

Manufacturing output rose in March

Manufacturers look set to increase industrial output in the next three months, based upon latest predictions from a leading business group.

According to the Confederation of British Industry's (CBI) latest Industrial Trends Survey, a sharp acceleration in production is expected in the UK - with IT and operational technology having a key role to play.

The CBI's recent survey of 398 firms found that output growth over the last three months remained steady but subdued. However, the outlook is much brighter for the next quarter of 2013.

Output volumes are expected to rise rapidly - the strongest expectations since April last year – with an anticipated pick-up in particularly marked in the food, drink and tobacco, and mechanical engineering sectors.

Exports orders are also at their highest level for three months, while total orders are broadly flat.

Anna Leach, head of economic analysis at the CBI, said manufacturers appear more optimistic about the next few months than the official figures and commentary would suggest, with sharp rises in output expected right across the sector.

"Total orders were steady and in line with long-run averages and there was some pickup in exports, possibly helped by the weak pound," she stated.

Price expectations have fallen to their lowest level for six months - driven by inflation expectations plummeting from near-record highs in the food, drink and tobacco sector."

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Posted by Dan Smith