The UK Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index® (PMI®) for the services sector showed a slight fall in November.
The index posted at 50.2, down from the previous month's 50.6 but only marginally. The survey also showed lowest business confidence for 11 months.
CIPS CEO David Noble said: "The services sector is in a state of stagnation with activity growth at its lowest for almost two years and businesses fearful of the direction of the economy. This has been compounded by concerns over public sector spending, leaving confidence fragile and momentum in short supply. It is the absence of new business however, that will be of most concern as the industry looks to build a solid foundation for growth in the New Year.
"Operating costs continue to bear down on the sector, another influence on the industry's dip in performance. Weather too was seen to have a negative impact on the industry generally.
"In the absence of new business, firms have been preoccupied with existing backlogs of work, which goes some way towards explaining the marginal rise in employment, the first in three months, though some businesses continue to report redundancies."
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