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Index of Industrial Production registers growth in September

12 November 2017

The figures reportedly suggest that manufacturing may help to counteract a consumer-led slowdown in the economy. Industrial output grew 2.5 per cent in the first half of this fiscal compared to 5.8 per cent a year before.

The estimate came after figures from the Office for National Statistics showed industrial output in September growing at its fastest pace this year, while activity on building sites stalled. Economists had expected 0.3% growth.

Most economists polled by Reuters think Britain's economy will slow next year, in large part due to uncertainty created by a lack of progress in talks on the terms of Britain's divorce from the European Union.

In the meantime, industrial production data from Finland is due.

United Kingdom industrial production grew at the fastest pace thus far this year in September and exceeded economists' expectations to end the third quarter on a strong note.

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Manufacturing output also rose 0.7% month-on-month, following a 0.4% increase in August. The cumulative growth in these three sectors during April-September 2017 over the corresponding period of 2016 has been 3.9 per cent, 1.9 per cent and 5.7 per cent, respectively.

"Given that manufacturing represents a relatively small share of the United Kingdom economy, the persistent weakness in consumer spending is a bigger consideration for the Bank of England", ING economist James Smith said.

Until now, the official readings of manufacturing have tended to show a weaker picture for the sector than upbeat surveys over 2017.

The ONS also released the United Kingdom foreign trade data for September, which showed that overall trade deficit narrowed more-than-expected. Economists polled by Reuters had expected 12.8 billion. "So we remain optimistic that net trade will provide more support to growth in the quarters ahead".

The visible trade deficit narrowed to GBP 11.25 billion in September from GBP 12.35 billion in the previous month.

Index of Industrial Production registers growth in September