British Manufacturing Output Worst For Seven Months

Britain's manufacturing output hit the lowest level for seven months in October, official figures showed on Dec. 6. The figures were published a day after British finance minister halved his Labour government's official economic growth forecast for 2005 to 1.75%, citing inflationary pressures.

Manufacturing output, which accounts for about 18% of Britain's gross domestic product (GDP), fell by 0.7% in October from the previous month, the office for National Statistics said. That was the biggest fall since March, and marked the third consecutive monthly decline.

A breakdown of the data revealed a 2.7% drop in manufacturing output by transport equipment industries, a 1.8% fall in the electrical and optical equipment industries and a 1.2% slide in the pulp, paper, printing and publishing sector.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2005

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