- U.K. Manufacturing Production Rises
The British economy painted a mixed picture once again in August following the surge in manufacturing production.
Manufacturing production climbed 0.4 percent in August, according to the Office for National Statistics report published on Tuesday.
However, the trade deficit widened to the highest in almost a year as imports jumped. The U.K. economy has been struggling since the June 2016 referendum, the economy grew at 0.3 percent in the second quarter. The lowest among the group seven nations.
Growing uncertainty amid rising inflation rate has eroded profits of businesses and weakened new investment. But while services and manufacturing sectors painted a mixed picture of the economy, the Bank of England’s policymakers are likely to raise interest rates in November as labour costs were revised up in the first and second quarters, 3.5 percent and 2.4 percent respectively.
Also, the weak pound has failed to spur substantial trade growth to offset slow economic growth as trade deficit in goods and services climbed to 5.6 billion pounds in August, with deficit in goods alone at an all-time high in the month. Therefore, third quarter trade deficit is expected to widen even further except September produce an unexpected surplus.
According to the report, the increase in manufacturing production was driven by import, another indication that increased cost of import goods has failed to deter British consumers from foreign goods.
The economy grew less than 0.6 percent in the first half of the year even with the revised numbers.