UK factories raise prices at record pace
UK manufacturers lifted their prices at the fastest rate on record last month, as the cost of raw materials -- such as oil -- surged.
The latest survey of purchasing managers found that selling prices rose at a record pace in April, with 61% of companies raising prices and fewer than 1% cutting them. That will feed through to higher prices in the shops.
Firms were also hit by rising prices for chemicals, energy, food, freight, fuels, gas, metals, oil, plastics, polymers, timber, and transportation by air, land and sea.
Around 85% of companies registered an increase in their own purchase prices, while there were no reports of a decrease (a survey first), says S&P Global and CIPS who produce the report.
Several companies simply noted that “everything” cost more. Supplier price increases, market forces, the war in Ukraine, general inflationary pressure and China lockdowns also contributed to higher purchase prices.
Worryingly, new order growth hit a 15-month low, due to weaker overseas demand and potential customers being put off by rising prices.
Weaker foreign demand reflected subdued conditions in overseas markets, the war in Ukraine and transportation issues. Lacklustre demand from the EU was linked to longer delivery times, customs checks and higher shipping costs post-Brexit, the PMI report says.
Overall, the UK manufacturing PMI inched up to 55.8 in April, from March’s one-year low of 55.2, which shows slightly faster growth.
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