British Factory Prices Slide in November

Decrease mainly reflected the decrease in petroleum products

The price of goods leaving British factories dived in November owing to a sharp drop in crude oil prices, official data showed on Dec. 8. November producer prices sank 0.7% from October, Britain's Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

That followed a 1% drop in October which was the biggest monthly decline since records began in 1986, as oil and other commodity prices fell sharply on global recession concerns.

November's drop was "mainly reflecting falls in petroleum products," the ONS said in a statement.

Compared with a year earlier, producer prices were up 5.1% in November, down sharply from the 6.7% increase posted in October.

Economists speculated that falling producer prices would further dampen consumer price inflation, which in turn could allow the Bank of England to cut interest rates even more as it attempts to fight a looming recession.

Last week, the Bank of England (BoE) slashed its key lending rate by 100 basis points to 2% -- a level last seen in 1951 -- amid mounting evidence that the country faces a deep recession.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2008

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