The EEF/BDO Manufacturing Outlook report is our quarterly update on trends in UK manufacturing. Our Manufacturing Outlook surveys have highlighted that Q1 2018 is all set to follow on from the peak of 2017 in Q4.
The latest quarter sees European markets increasing opportunities despite current Brexit negotiations, with output and order balances remaining healthy. Exports are strong, especially within capital equipment and European markets are continuing to drive export growth with the UK market trying to catch up.
Tom Lawton, Partner and Head of BDO Manufacturing, comments:
“These results do indicate continued and growing opportunities in the EU and around the world but the sector also faces the challenges of the uncertainty of Brexit and the increasing use of automation and Industry 4.0. Therefore, it is more important than ever for the Government to provide real clarity on its plans for a working and effective Industrial Strategy and Brexit. Manufacturers will need this clarity if they are to continue to commit to the significant capital investments required to support long-term growth.”
Quarterly Balance Tracker
It is really promising to see the Q1 results highlight how ambitious UK manufacturers are defying Brexit uncertainties and continuing to invest in their businesses’ futures.
Source: EEF Manufacturing Outlook Survey
The survey shows some balances have come off the multi-year highs seen in the second half of last year but output, orders, investment and recruitment all remain significantly above their long-run average.
This strong performance, has led EEF to upgrade growth forecasts for manufacturing for this year with new forecasts for 2019 also indicating further expansion for manufacturing.
Download the full Q1 report for more information and analysis of the UK manufacturing trends, including recruitment, investment and 2018 forecast.
If you would like to discuss any of the topics raised in this report, please don't hesitate to contact Tom Lawton or your usual BDO Manufacturing partner.
Image source: TBC