Manufacturing recruitment activity increased in July as employers created new jobs in order to cope with an anticipated increase in demand for their goods in the remainder of 2018.
Despite a decrease in new orders leading to output growth slowing to a 16-month low, the latest IHS Markit/CIPS Manufacturing PMI found that manufacturers across the country have continued to take on new staff.
The strongest growth (both in terms of production output and new orders) was seen in the investment goods sector, with consumer goods also remaining stable (although less so than in June). The export market strengthened during July, with orders rising to a six-month high, but the domestic market was the main cause of the industry slowdown as fewer new orders were placed by companies within the UK.
But despite the subdued growth in activity, manufacturing employment continued to increase for the 24th month in a row. Levels of job creation maintained strength across the consumer, investment and intermediate goods industries (even though the latter declined in output for the first time in two years).
Many employers cited the increase in job creation as being linked to efforts to reduce existing backlogs of work, as well as the expectation of an increase in new orders over the coming months, leading to higher levels of business output.
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