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Manufacturing Plays Big Part In Improving Scottish Performance

The manufacturing industry has helped to improve the performance of the Scottish economy.

Manufacturers in Scotland continued the trend of the last two years by posting a reduced amount of incomplete work last month.

The seasonally adjusted headline Bank of Scotland PMI, which is a single figure measurement of the monthly change in the combined output of services and manufacturing, went down by a fraction to 49.9 last month from 50.0 in April.

This most recent recording suggests a mainly stable output in the Scottish private sector.

Overall, the private sector in Scotland received a greater volume of new business last month, with the expansion rate speeding up to its joint highest level in nine months.

However, the rise in the amount of new work did not result in an output increase, which stayed roughly the same.

The latest figures also show that the number of workers went down for the sixth month in a row after another decline in outstanding business levels.

Meanwhile, there was a continuation in price pressures as both input costs and output charges rose.

For the second month in succession, the level of new businesses expanded in the Scottish private sector, with growth rates accelerating to their fastest level since August 2015, yet they stayted relatively marginal and more fragile than the historical average.

Scottish manufacturers drove this latest increase, as they posted the sharpest rise in the sector for almost two years.

However, among service providers the expansion in new work was less evident.

The number of workers at private sector companies in Scotland once again contracted last month, making it a six month consecutive sequence of declining numbers.

The manufacturing and service sectors experienced a roughly similar pace of job cutting, with many experts stating the cause to be the continuing downturn in the oil and gas sector.

SME Banking Scotland’s Regional Director, Graham Blair, said that firms will be hoping for another lift in demand for Scottish goods and services over the course of the next few months.

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