LONDON -- Marking the second month in a row of gains, British manufacturing output rose in March, official data showed on Thursday.
Manufacturing output rallied by 1.1% in March from activity in February, easily outstripping market expectations for a gain of 0.2%, according to analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires.
It dipped by 1.4% on a 12-month comparison, the Office for National Statistics said.
The monthly increase was driven by output at metals and electronics firms and an increase in North Sea oil and gas production. Electricity and gas production also rose due to cold weather.
The ONS added that the wider measure of industrial production -- which includes also mining and quarrying, electricity, gas and water supply -- rose by 0.7% in March from February, but also fell 1.4% on an annual basis.
The official data was published ahead of an interest rate decision from the Bank of England.
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2013