United Kingdom: Industrial output growth beats expectations in March
May 9, 2013
In March, industrial production expanded a seasonally adjusted 0.7% over the previous month. The figure follows a 0.9% rise in February (previously reported: +1.0% month-on-month) and beat market expectations of a paltry 0.2% increase.
The modest deceleration was the result of a contraction in mining and quarrying output, which swung from a 2.0% expansion in February to a 2.0% contraction in March amid extended maintenance in the North Sea oil rigs. In contrast, growth in manufacturing picked up from 0.7% in February to 1.1% in March, well above market expectation of a 0.3% expansion.
In annual terms, industrial production dropped 1.4%, which, nevertheless, marks a significant improvement over the 2.5% contraction seen in February. As a result, the trend is now pointing upwards, with annual average growth in industrial production stepping up from minus 2.4% in February to minus 2.3%.
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists project industrial production to contract 0.8% in 2013, which is down 0.2 percentage points over the previous month's forecast. For 2014, the panel anticipates growth in industrial production to rebound and expand 1.2%.