Belfast Telegraph

Struggling sterling hits UK manufacturing growth

By Ben Woods

Output in Britain's manufacturing industry eased back last month as firms grappled with sharply higher import costs caused by the Brexit-hit pound.

The closely watched Markit/CIPS UK Manufacturing purchasing managers' index said output hit 53.4 in November, down from 54.2 in October and below economists' expectations of 54.5. A reading above 50 indicates growth.

Growth slowed from September's 27-month high when the industry rebounded from a significant slump in the wake of Britain's vote to leave the EU. However, output and new orders remained solid, with rising consumer demand and business-to-business spending helping manufacturers push ahead.

Sterling's post-Brexit vote fall sparked a rise in new business abroad, with demand increasing from America, mainland Europe and the Middle East. Despite the export boost, the plunging pound remained a thorn in the side of firms.

Belfast Telegraph