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ECONOMIC DATA THIS WEEK

CBI Industrial Trends Survey, February 2015:  The latest results from the CBI show that manufacturing activity picked up in February;  total order books strengthened further on already robust levels, reaching a 6-month high level and with almost all of sub-sectors reporting above average order books in both January and February.  Export order books also rebounded and are now above their long-run average, but they remain noticeably weaker than overall orders, showing that it is the home market that is leading the way here.

There was also some growth in output volumes in February, although the pace of growth was still at about the same level as that seen across the 2nd half of 2014.  Encouragingly, there was a substantial pick up in expectations about a growth in output over the next 3 months which hit a 5-month high with 16 of the 18 sub-sectors anticipating growth.

You can get the CBI Press Release on this survey from their web-site at http://news.cbi.org.uk/news/growth-picks-up-speed-in-manufacturing-sector/ or on request from MTA.

CECIMO Toolbox, February 2015:  The latest issue of the CECIMO Toolbox contains the usual round-up of data on Europe, a summary of the European Commission’s latest economic forecast and MT-IX, CECIMO’s own index of share prices for publically quoted machine tool companies.

The bulletin also includes the results of CECIMO’s January Business Climate Barometer;  this shows a slightly improving outlook for the European machine tool industry (CECIMO only covers machine tools) with a modest increase in the net percentage of respondents saying that there was a “good” business situation.  Expectations about future demand, production, exports and employment also showed a positive trend, with export activity over the next 3 months notably stronger than in the October survey.

You can download the Toolbox, including the report on the Barometer survey, from their web-site at www.cecimo.eu or request it from MTA.

CELIMO Trends Survey, 4th Quarter 2014:  The latest results from CELIMO (the European group for importers & distributors of machine tools and tooling) shows a strong end to 2014 with business levels for the region as a whole +13% higher than in the previous quarter and at their highest cumulative level since the middle of 2008.  Looking forward into the new year, business levels were expected to be broadly at the same level as at the end of 2014.

If you would like a copy of the CELIMO Trends Survey report, please contact Geoff Noon at MTA (e-mail: gnoon@mta.org.uk).