Output and new orders rise for first time since January in the construction sector's UK Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers’ Index® (PMI®). A solid inflow of new export orders was also reported.
David Noble, CIPS CEO commented:
"A march of the makers may be on its way following the first rise in export sales for a year with the Americas, Middle East and Australia making up for lacklustre demand in Europe giving the manufacturing sector something to savour. The sector's steady performance in April, which saw an increase in output, was supported by easing prices for fuel and commodities, which is welcome news. However, increased prices elsewhere and the weak currency are a reminder of the difficult economic conditions which remain.
"The consumer goods sector is leading the revival in response to overseas demand and an improved performance in the investment goods industry bodes well. Intermediate goods, the bellweather of the sector, continue to struggle, but even their outlook has improved. Across the board, firms have increased their output prices, signalling some confidence in the sector, as they look to recoup Q1 losses and protect their profit margins.
"We should not forget that the sector is not in rude health. A weak Q1 has led to continued job losses in April reminding us that the tought times will undoubtedly continue.Bussinesses remain cost cautious, but the latest figures are at least a chink of light in the tunnel."
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