U.K. manufacturing PMI falls less-than-expected
In a report, market research group Markit said that its U.K. manufacturing PMI fell by 0.2 points to a seasonally adjusted 47.6 in November, down from a reading of 47.8 in October, whose figure was revised up from a 28-month low of 47.4.
Analysts had expected the manufacturing PMI to decline by 0.8 points to 47.0 in November.
On the index, a reading above 50.0 indicates industry expansion, below indicates contraction.
The U.K. manufacturing sector contracted for the second successive month in November, as companies cut back production in response to lower demand from both domestic and export clients.
Weaker operating conditions were reflected in the labor market, with payroll numbers reduced at the fastest pace for over two years.
Commenting on the report, David Noble, chief executive officer at the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply, said, 'It looks like it's going to be a bleak winter for U.K. manufacturers with the PMI showing very little to be positive about at the moment.'
'Exports orders, which U.K. manufacturers are increasingly dependent on, continue to decline as the euro zone crisis impacts demand in the U.S. and Asia as well as Europe,' Mr. Noble added.
Following the release of the data, the pound was fractionally lower against the U.S. dollar, with GBP/USD easing down 0.05% to trade at 1.5693.
Meanwhile, European stock markets were mixed. The EURO STOXX 50 shed 0.25%, France's CAC 40 edged 0.35% lower, the FTSE 100 added 0.2%, while Germany's DAX shed 0.35%.
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