Manufacturers are going through one of their worse periods of growth since the 2009 recession, according to survey figures released by EEF, a trade body, today.
The percentage of manufacturers that said output had fallen over the last three months outweighed the percentage who reported an increase by 12 percentage points. It marks the sharpest contraction since 2009.
The slowdown was broad-based, and not confined to companies along the oil and gas supply chain, which are still struggling in the wake of last year’s collapse in global oil prices.
Orders from both the UK and overseas declined.
“The prospect of manufacturing contributing to growth in the UK economy this year has all but faded away with another disappointing set of indicators from our survey,” said EEF chief economist Lee Hopley.
“The downbeat mood may not be universal across all industry sectors, but it certainly seems to be spreading as the challenges have mounted through this year – from the collapse in the oil price, slower world trade growth and weaker than expected construction activity.”