Agents' Summary of Business Conditions - October 2013

We regularly publish a summary of reports compiled by our twelve regional Agents following discussions with at least 700 businesses across the UK every reporting period.
Published on 23 October 2013
  • Growth in demand and output had gathered pace.
  • Underlying consumer confidence and spending had picked up a little further on a year ago.
  • Demand for housing had continued to strengthen.
  • Investment intentions remained modestly positive and showed signs of improvement.
  • Growth in manufacturing output for domestic and overseas markets had picked up.
  • Business services turnover growth had strengthened as work volumes increased.
  • Construction output growth had continued to increase as house-building activity rose, though there were rising reports of capacity constraints starting to bite.
  • Corporate credit availability and demand had increased a little. Payment terms between companies had lengthened in some cases, notably in retail and construction.
  • Employment intentions had risen in business services. Recruitment difficulties had tightened a little but remained marginally below normal.
  • Capacity utilisation had continued to recover towards normal in manufacturing. There remained some slack in services, more so in consumer-facing than in business-to-business firms.
  • The annual rate of growth in labour costs per employee remained modest, but there were early signs of upward pressure for some roles.
  • Annual growth in the cost of raw materials had eased.
  • Inflation in manufacturers’ output prices and business services prices remained muted.
  • Consumer price inflation had remained stable, but was expected to ease in food.

PDFAgents' summary of business conditions - October 2013

This page was last updated 31 January 2023