[London, 7th Reuters]–The UK General Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) revision released by IHS Markit / CIPS in March was 56.4, a significant improvement from 49.6 in February. It surpassed 50, the dividing line between business expansion and deterioration, for the first time in three months.
Orders increased in anticipation that restrictions on going out to control the infection of the new coronavirus will be relaxed from April, and employment increased for the first time since February last year when the infection spread.
However, it has been revised downward from the preliminary figure of 56.6.
In the service industry, which was most affected by lockdown (city blockade), about two-thirds are expected to expand in the future. Some respondents said they benefited from the increase in residential real estate transactions.
Employment is expanding in anticipation of the resumption of economic activity in April-May. It is the highest level since the middle of 2019.
Trade with the European Union (EU) has been sluggish since the end of the withdrawal transition period on January 1, and orders from Asia and the United States could not make up for the decline in service exports to the EU.
However, the rate of decrease in orders from overseas was the smallest in the past 13 months.