United Kingdom service sector growth slows as prices rise

United Kingdom service sector growth slows as prices rise

United Kingdom service sector growth slows as prices rise

British construction activity expanded at the fastest pace in five months in November, driven by solid rise in residential building work, survey data from IHS Markit showed Monday.

The Markit/CIPS UK Construction purchasing managers' index (PMI) showed a reading of 53.1 last month, up from 50.8 in October and easily beating economist forecasts for 51.0. "The latest index reading indicated steep growth in business activity across the sector that was the second-quickest since May 2011", the report says.

"Uncertainty about the economic outlook, linked commonly to Brexit worries, continued to permeate the business mood in November", Williamson added.

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November has seen the highest pickup in Russia's service sector since January 2017 thanks to a surge in new orders and accelerating business activity, according to Markit Economics data.

The survey provided reassurance that the economy has held on to its recent momentum in the fourth quarter so far, rather than slowing any further, Ruth Gregory, an economist at Capital Economics, said.

Improving conditions for manufacturers failed to keep Markit's composite PMI from declining to 48.9 in November from 49.5 in the prior month.

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"Businesses could no longer fight against the tide of higher prices for food, fuel and salaries as input cost inflation remained close to its strongest for six years, and businesses passed these increases on to consumers at the fastest rate since February 2008".

This marks 16 consecutive months above the 50 no-change value, however, service providers' optimism for the year ahead remained much weaker than the long-run survey average.

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