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Factory prices exceed expectations in December

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by Kay Mitchell

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today revealed a rise in factory prices for the month of December.

According to the ONS, the prices of goods leaving UK factories grew at a faster pace than expected at 0.5%.

The monthly rise takes the annual rate of output price inflation to 3.5% – exceeding forecasts of a 3.1% rise.

Meanwhile, input price inflation, the cost of materials bought by producers, also rose more than expected at an annual rate of 6.9% – the fastest annual rate since November 2008.

Commenting on the figures, Howard Archer, chief UK and European economist at IHS Global Insight, said: “We remain dubious that manufacturers will be ably to significantly lift their prices over the coming months given substantial excess capacity and elevated competition amid still challenging conditions.

“While the manufacturing sector appears to be recovering to some extent after a largely dismal 2009, it is still hardly racing ahead,” he added.

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News posted: January 8, 2010

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