Friday, 7 March 2014

UK Service Sector Holds Steady

Reports released this week suggest that the UK service sector has continued to expand by strong margins in the second month of 2014. Considering the role the service sector holds in the overall national economy, what could these figures mean for the business sales industry?

The numbers were strong; the Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), the primary source for measuring real economic activity in the UK, for the industry held at 58.2. This was slightly down from the 58.3 figure for January.

However when you consider the fact that anything above 50 on the scale means that the sector has expanded, we see that the service sector is still in growth mode. Furthermore the Markit Survey concluded that confidence in general economic outlook for the nation was at its strongest since September 2009, the height of the recession. It has been growing for the past four months.

The survey was part of a slew of surveys regularly conducted by market experts over the progress of both the service and manufacturing sectors. This month figure generally pointed towards a trend of the service sector outperforming the manufacturing sector. In fact experts have used this to suggest that the service sector is the main driver of British economic growth.

Chris Williamson, Markit's chief economist spoke on the issue. William said that “alongside vibrant growth in manufacturing and construction, the upbeat picture of the services economy points to the country enjoying another quarter of robust economic growth of approximately 0.7%." 

Williamson expanded on this point, explaining that "there's no end in sight to the good news: with business confidence in the services economy rising further in February, growth should pick up again in March, adding conviction to the growing consensus that the economy is set for its best year of growth since 2007, with the rate easily surpassing the 1.8% expansion seen last year."

 So it’s clear here that growing confidence from business leaders is enabling expansion in the service sector. This is further evidenced by the fact that expansion in the sector has resulted in its strongest levels of new staff hire since October last year. Markit has made it clear that it sees these figures as further proof that the British economy is now in sustained recovery.

At RTA Business, this not only assures us that business leaders are ready to aid growth, meaning that they are more likely to look at acquiring new business, but that this activity will be particularly heightened in Britain’s booming service industry. 


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