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UK manufacturing orders fall to weakest since Jan 2021: CBI

British manufacturers saw the biggest monthly fall in their orders in nearly three years this month and a drop in output was expected to extend into early 2024, a survey from the Confederation of British Industry showed on Wednesday.

With factories feeling the impact of higher borrowing costs the CBI said its monthly industrial orders balance dropped to -35 in November – the lowest since January 2021 – from -26 in October, well below its long-run average of -13.

A measure of output over the past three months fell more sharply than in the three months to October and it was seen remaining weak in the next three months.

CBI Deputy Chief Economist Anna Leach said factories had been struggling with weaker demand and the run-down of stocks of finished goods.

“This latest data will fuel concerns that the economy is slowing swiftly as the highest interest rates for 15 years take their toll on demand,” she said.

British finance minister Jeremy Hunt has said he will announce measures to boost economic growth in his Autumn Statement budget update speech to parliament at around 1230 GMT on Wednesday.
Source: Reuters

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