According to the CBI’s latest Industrial Trends Survey,
According to the report, for the first time since February 1996 as many firms said export orders were above normal as below, driven by renewed demand for capital goods such as industrial engines and aerospace equipment.
On the back of the improved export situation, 22 per cent of manufacturers reported total orders were above normal compared to 34 per cent who said they were below normal, producing a balance of minus 12. Although negative, this maintains the slowly improving trend seen since the turn of the year and is comparable to April’s balance (-11), which was the strongest since February 2005 (-10).
Reflecting this picture of relatively healthy global demand, manufacturers expect the total volume of output to increase over the next three months (a balance of +10).
However, conditions in the UK’s domestic market remain difficult and despite the increased cost of metals and oil (up by 24.1% and 13.2% respectively over the survey period) manufacturers do not expect to be able to increase their prices over the next three months, putting further pressure on profit margins.
“The outlook for