British Manufacturing Output Stalled in June

Aug. 9, 2011
U.K. industrial production 'much weaker than expected.'

British industrial output stagnated in June and the trade-in-goods deficit worsened, official data showed on Tuesday.

Industrial production was unchanged in June from the previous month, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.

However it sank by 0.3% in June on a 12-month comparison.

Expectations had been for a monthly increase of 0.4% and a slight annual gain of 0.2%, according to analysts polled by Dow Jones Newswires.

Manufacturing output, which excludes mining and quarrying, as well as electricity, gas and water supply, sank by 0.4% in June from May, but grew by 2.1% on an annual basis.

In a separate data release, the ONS revealed that Britain's trade-in-goods deficit widened to £8.9 billion ($14.6 billion, 10.2 billion euros) in June from £8.5 billion in May.

"Following the further falls in markets already seen this morning comes some disappointing news on the U.K.'s economic recovery," said Capital Economics analyst Vicky Redwood in response to the data.

ING economist James Knightley added that tumbling global stock markets could further damage business confidence and dent industrial and manufacturing output in the coming months.

"U.K. industrial production for June has come in much weaker than expected, remaining flat on the month versus expectations of a 0.4% increase," he said.

"The worry is that plunging equity markets will hurt business confidence and lead to firms cutting orders thus prompting further falls in output."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2011

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