Agents' Summary of Business Conditions - September 2014

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 17 September 2014
  • Retail sales values growth had eased, but this was due to lower food price inflation; consumer services values had continued to grow steadily.
  • Housing market activity had stabilised at lower transaction levels, after a weakening in earlier months, which contacts largely attributed to the implementation of the Mortgage Market Review. House price inflation had eased.
  • Investment intentions for the next twelve months had remained steady, and were consistent with more rapid growth in services investment than manufacturing.
  • Business services turnover growth had remained strong.
  • Manufacturing output growth for the domestic market had eased. Fragile European demand, sterling’s appreciation and the crisis in Ukraine had affected export volumes.
  • Construction output growth had eased slightly but remained robust.
  • Corporate credit conditions had improved further.
  • Employment intentions had weakened in manufacturing and consumer services but had increased further for business services.
  • Recruitment difficulties had edged up, and were affecting a widening range of sectors.
  • Capacity utilisation had eased over the month, as investment and recruitment had boosted capacity at some firms ahead of expected demand growth.
  • Growth in total labour costs per employee had remained steady.
  • Materials costs and imported finished goods prices had continued to fall on a year earlier.
  • Output price inflation had edged lower, but profitability had continued to rise modestly.
  • Consumer price inflation had remained modest.

PDFAgents' Summary of Business Conditions - September 2014

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