Friday 12 April 2013

The March Services PMI Numbers: Three Positive Economic Signs

Authored by Mike Roberts

The latest Markit/CIPS Services Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) recorded a figure of 52.4, a slight increase from February’s score of 51.8. This reading was the best in seven months and has helped the UK bounce back from the brink of a triple dip recession.

“The government and Bank of England will breathe sighs of relief in seeing signs of a gathering upturn in the services sector during March, which looks set to have helped the UK avoid a triple-dip recession by the narrowest of margins.” Explained Chris Williamson, chief economist at Markit.

This month’s numbers also highlight three more positive pieces of news:

  • More companies are spending again. March marked the third straight month of new business growth in the UK. 
  • 47 per cent of respondents reported that the growth in new business is also prompting increased confidence that the services sector will continue to rebound and prosper in the longer term. 
  • Again, new sales mean great things. The survey also uncovered that more companies are hiring new employees to fulfill the increase in demands. 

Those companies that are signing new contracts are also finding themselves paying more expensive prices. Commodity, logistics and overall product costs remain on the rise, and companies are passing the increases on to consumers. The rise in prices is not affecting decisions to buy…yet.

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