Manufacturing optimism soars – CBI survey

CBIGifford300newOptimism among UK manufacturers rose at the fastest rate since April 2010 as orders and output continued to grow steadily in the three months to October, according to the latest CBI quarterly Industrial Trends Survey.

The survey reveals total new orders grew for the second consecutive quarter and output rose for the third consecutive quarter. Total new orders grew at the fastest pace since April 2012, with growth in the volume of domestic orders at its highest rate since April 2011.

Rising demand helped boost overall sentiment as well as optimism about export prospects for the year ahead, despite new export orders growing only slightly.  

The investment intentions of manufacturing firms continued to present a mixed picture. Plans for spending on plant and machinery declined on three months ago but strengthened for ‘intangibles’ such as product innovation, where investment intentions were the strongest for six quarters. Meanwhile plans for spending on training and retraining were the strongest since October 1997.

CBI Director of Economics Stephen Gifford (pictured) said the sector had increasing confidence in the UK’s recovery with optimism about the general business situation improving to the greatest extent since April 2010.

He continued: “New orders and output are continuing to grow steadily and expectations for the next three months are promising. But there are only limited signs of rebalancing towards exports or investment, with marginal growth in export orders and firms scaling back plans for capital expenditure on plant and machinery.”

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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