Welcome to the first edition of Manufacturing Outlook for 2019, in partnership with Made UK (formerly known as EEF).
After the slowdown experienced in the second half of 2018, manufacturers’ output and order balances remained broadly untouched this quarter. Output is still over its long-term average however, the gap between orders and output seems once again to hint that part of the production is related to stockpiling activities, rather than customer’s demand.
Total orders are up from Q4 in 2018 and for the first time since 2016, domestic orders are stronger than export orders.
On a positive note, manufacturers’ employment balances had a positive pick up after the drop in Q4 and are now back at the levels seen for the large part of 2017 and 2018. Similarly, investment intentions are also higher than last quarter.
Download the full Q1 2019 report
If you would like to discuss any of the topics raised in this report, please do not hesitate to contact Tom Lawton or your usual BDO Manufacturing partner.
Why manufacturing matters?
The manufacturing sector is hugely important for the UK economy, trade and investment. UK manufacturing employment stands at over 2.7 million people and manufacturing accounts for nearly half of all UK exports. Manufacturing also contributes 10% of all Gross Value Added. It is not hard to see why manufacturing is key to the UK’s trade balance and to see that this will become all the more true post-Brexit.
The Manufacturing Outlook Report is an Make UK/BDO collaboration. It is important to us that we understand the challenges that you face in running your manufacturing businesses. It helps us use our skills, experience and knowledge to make a tangible difference to your business.