The latest results of the survey showed that output volumes fell in the 3 months to March* but are expected to increase in the coming period.  The fall in output was at a similar pace to that recorded in the February* survey, with a decline being recorded in 11 out of 17 sub-sectors;  of these, particular note is made of the chemicals, motor vehicles & transport equipment, plastic products and metal products sub-sectors, with two of these being among our key markets.

Total order books were reported as below “normal” in March* and at a broadly similar level to that which was recorded in the February* survey.  This is also a little below the long run average for this measure.

Export order books were also seen as below normal and, in this case, the situation deteriorated significantly compared to February*;  this took the balance t well below its long-run average and was the weakest figure since last November*.

Stocks of finished goods were seen as more than “adequate” in March* at a level that was broadly unchanged from February* and  in line with the long-run average for this measure.

* Note:  Although dated March, the data collection period ran from 26th February to 13th March so, in reality it covers the trends in February, the three months ending then (December 2023, January and February 2024) and the following 3 months (March, April and May).  The same principal applies to all other references to months.

The Press Release of the CBI ITS is available from their website at (22 March) or on request from MTA (we can also provide a brief summary of the results).

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