Output increased across nearly all manufacturing sectors in November, rising by 0.6 per cent on the previous month, and by 5.6 per cent compared to the same time in 2009.
The industry has grown for 13 consecutive months, according to the underlying trend of three month blocks, which the Office for National Statistics (ONS) recommends.
“As suggested by survey data for the final months of the year, the manufacturing sector continues to grow robustly,” commented Nida Ali of the Ernst & Young Item Club.
He added: “December’s purchasing managers’ index indicated another rise in export orders and we expect manufacturing to continue leading the economic recovery this year.”
“The strong contribution from capital goods supports our view that investment will continue to grow steadily in the coming quarters,” added Hetal Mehta of Daiwa Capital.
Overall industrial production rose by 0.4 per cent in November, slowed down by erratic components such as mining and quarrying and utilities.
In the three-month comparison, provided to smooth out “volatile” monthly data, production increased at double the rate – by 0.8 per cent.
Industrial production accounts for 17.2 per cent of GDP.
The whole UK economy expanded by half a per cent in the final three months of the year, according to a forecast released yesterday by the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR).
“Unless output turns down again, the recession is over,” the report said. However, the economy will not fully recover until 2012, NIESR warned.