Manufacturing surges to three year high – EEF/BDO survey

arrowup300British manufacturing’s long awaited resurgence appears to be continuing with output balances reaching their highest level for three years, according to the latest survey from the manufacturers’ organisation and accountancy and business advisory firm BDO.

Ahead of CIPS data due to be published later this morning and expected to also be positive, EEF says the rebound is being led by a stronger domestic market although conditions in overseas markets have also picked up. In line with recent official statistics the upswing in output is broad based across all sectors.

The survey also suggests there are signs the UK’s investment performance may finally begin to regain ground lost in the past three years with investment intentions, especially among SMEs, escalating sharply to some of the highest levels seen in the survey’s history.

EEF chief economist Lee Hopley said there was growing confidence that improving trading conditions will continue into the final months of this year and then accelerate through the gears in 2014 but added “we need to see this translate into commitments to invest in new capacity, and for this to take place in the UK”.

The survey’s key findings included:

·       Output and orders rebounded strongly to balances last seen in 2010

·       Broad based across all sectors

·       Domestic markets leading rebound

·       Investment intentions rising to six year high

·       Recruitment holding steady

·       Forecasts for 2014 upgraded for both GDP and manufacturing

This material is protected by copyright Ken Hurst 2013.

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About Ken Hurst

Ken Hurst began his career as a journalist in London over 30 years ago, working on a range of publications before moving on to weekly newspaper production in the newly-independent Zambia of the 1970s. He returned to the UK where his work included spells on newspapers and magazines, before moving to head up Norwich Union’s corporate affairs division. In the 1990s he moved on to freelance, co-own and publish the B2B audio magazine Sound and front the BBC radio Yesterday’s Papers programme. There followed six years as Business Editor at Britain’s biggest selling regional daily newspaper, The Eastern Daily Press, where he led an award-winning team and for whom he still writes a weekly socio/political comment column. Subsequently, he was Group Editorial Director at CBM, responsible for its UK and US magazine output – including The Manufacturer magazine – research-driven industry reports and live events content. Currently he is Contributing Editor at Works Management magazine publisher Findlay Media and Chairman of the consumer publishing house TNT Multimedia Ltd. He is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and of the British Association of Communicators in Business.
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