Bank of Scotland

Activity expands further as new business increases solidly in December

09 January 2012

Latest data from the Bank of Scotland PMI indicated that Scottish private sector output increased further in December. This reflected the first rise in new business for four months, with employment also increasing, but at a slower pace. Elsewhere, charges were raised at an accelerated rate as cost pressures remained strong.

Output growth edged up for the second consecutive month in December, but nonetheless remained shy of the pace of expansion registered in the first half of 2011. This was signalled by the Bank of Scotland PMI posting 51.2, up marginally from 51.1 in November. The UK as a whole, however, performed even better, expanding solidly on the month.

Scottish firms recorded the first increase in new business for four months in December. Moreover, business wins rose at the fastest pace since April 2011, and solidly overall. Growth was confined to the service sector, however, where product launches and successful marketing led to a robust month-on-month increase in new work. New orders placed at manufacturers continued to fall, albeit at a slower rate.

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