UK manufacturing sees weak start to 2016

The Confederation of British Industry monthly survey has suggested UK manufacturing has suffered its biggest decline since 2009 in the year’s first quarter, but is expected to quickly bounce back.

Reuters reports that the CBI survey showed output slumping to – 15 for March from 0 in February, though this is tipped to rebound. The first quarter’s output result of +11 is expected to grow to +23 in the second quarter.

"Whilst total order and export books remained steady, a drop in output reflected some volatility in the food and drink sector. Reassuringly, manufacturers expect a swift turnaround in activity," the CBI’s director of economics told Reuters.

Elsewhere, slowness in the British industry has been explained by poor demand from sluggish export markets and weak commodity prices. Many of Britain’s highly-specialised manufacturers service the oil and gas sector, The Financial Times notes.

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