This publication is a summary of monthly reports compiled by the Bank of England’s Agents between late February 2017 and late May 2017. It generally makes comparisons with activity and prices a year earlier.
- Moderate underlying growth in activity had continued overall. Annual sales growth in volume terms had continued to slow. Export volume growth had continued to increase, supported by the lower sterling exchange rate and stronger world growth.
- Investment intentions had strengthened a little further, including investment in technology and to support increased export demand. However, heightened uncertainty remained a drag on some businesses’ willingness to invest.
- The direct impact of the fall in sterling on cost inflation for manufacturers’ raw materials had eased, but increased costs continued to pass through supply chains into retail prices.