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UK Manufacturing Rises to 15 month high

British factory activity jumped unexpectedly in December to grow at its fastest pace since September 2011, a survey showed on Wednesday, raising the chance that the economy eked out growth at the end of 2012.

The Markit/CIPS Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) rose to a 15-month high of 51.4 in December from an upwardly revised 49.2 in November – a far stronger increase than any predicted in a Reuters poll of 24 economists.

Britain’s economy is forecast to shrink 0.1% in the last three months of 2012. But stronger-than-expected official services output data for October, released just before Christmas, raised the prospect that the economy will avoid contraction.

The manufacturing index’s upturn takes it above the 50-mark that separates growth from contraction for the first time since March, and breaks with poor official data, which showed a 1.3% fall in factory output for October.

“UK manufacturing exited 2012 on a positive note, with December’s PMI data signalling a reassuringly solid return to growth for the sector,” said Rob Dobson, the Markit economist who compiled the survey.

via Guardian [1]

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza [6]

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse [7]
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza