The IHS Markit/Cips manufacturing PMI for June has revealed that the UK is leading Europe's manufacturing revival as industry returns to action after lockdown. Factories returned to growth during the month, with an index score of 50.1, up from 40.7 in May, and 32.6 in April.
The showing was stronger than survey the reading for eurozone firms, which remained in contraction at 47.4 last month. Rob Dobson, director at IHS Markit, said: "June completed a marked turnaround in momentum as the sector switched from April's record contraction back to stabilisation in the space of two months. Output edged higher and domestic demand firmed as lockdown restrictions loosened, factories restarted and staff returned to work. Business optimism also recovered to a 21-month high.
The planned loosening in restrictions on July 4th should aid further gains in coming months”. However, Duncan Brock of t he Cips cautioned that the June recovery represented stabilisation rather than a lasting bounce after activity collapsed due to the economic shutdown. Although employer confidence has picked up, export business fell for the eighth month running, despite increased overseas demand for protective gear, healthcare and cleaning products.
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