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August 19, 2010    

Manufacturing outlook positive as exports rebound

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by Kay Murchie

The Confederation of British Industry’s (CBI) monthly industrial trends survey has today provided a positive outlook for the manufacturing sector.

The CBI’s order book balance rose to -14 this month from -16 in July. While this indicates that orders are still declining, it represented the slowest pace in two years.

Meanwhile, the export order book balance recovered to -1 this month from July’s -12.

It must be highlighted that this survey’s order book balances are traditionally in negative territory, even when other measures show rising orders.

The CBI’s head of economic analysis, Lai Wah Co, said: “Prospects for the manufacturing sector remain very positive. Demand is steadily improving, helped by the revival of export orders after some weakness last month, and manufacturers expect slightly strong production growth in the three months ahead.”

Meanwhile, the domestic prices index soared to +11 - the highest level since May, while output expectations rose from +6 to +10.

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