British manufacturing slide slows

Dec. 3, 2012 at 2:07 PM

LONDON, Dec. 3 (UPI) -- The rate of manufacturing decline in Britain slowed in November, research group Markit said Monday.

The November Purchasing Managers Index rose from 47.3 in October, a three-month low, to 49.1 in November.

The number shows an improvement -- a slower decline -- but manufacturing remained in contraction as figures figures below 50 indicate shrinking business activity.

Markit said Britain's PMI remained negative for the seventh consecutive month with an average for the first two month of the fourth quarter at 48.2, which is an improvement from the 47.8 average for the third quarter.

For manufactured goods, "demand from the domestic market remained subdued," the monthly report said.

Markit economist Ron Dobson said in a statement that the manufacturing sector was "stabilizing -- suggesting that the economy is still showing no signs of re-balancing towards goods production and exports, and that manufacturing is unlikely to help prevent a possible slide back into contraction in the fourth quarter."

"The renewed recession in the eurozone and sluggish growth further afield clearly remain big worries for British producers," he said.

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