The UK purchasing managers’ index – a survey of private sector firms – rose to 57.6 in November from October’s 55.8, according to figures released today by Lloyds Bank.
A score above 50 signifies expansion. The figures represent a faster pace of growth in across the UK in November compared to October.
London registered a PMI of 57.6 in November, up from October’s 54.4.
The strongest growth regions were the South East, West Midlands and the East of England, which scored 60.3, 58.8, and 58.6 respectively.
The PMI number for Wales rose to 59.7 in November from October’s 58.8. However, output growth slowed in Scotland, where the PMI fell to 52.8 from 54.2.
The survey also revealed strong new business growth, reflecting improving demand in the manufacturing and service sectors.
Private sector companies have boosted their headcount, with the employment sub-index strongest in the East of England with a PMI of 58.6. The employment index for Wales hit a record high of 55.7.
Cost pressures at private sector firms remained low as global commodity prices tumble, including large declines in oil prices.
“The continued business and employment growth seen last month, in the face of economic weakness in some export markets, is a testament to the resilience of firms across England and Wales,” said Tim Hinton, managing director, SME and mid-markets banking, Lloyds Bank.
“The drop in costs for firms should also provide a tailwind for growth in the months ahead and help alleviate cost pressures in both the manufacturing and service sectors.”