This publication generally covers intelligence gathered from business contacts between late August 2017 and mid-October 2017. It generally makes comparisons with activity and prices over the past three months on a year earlier.
- Growth in activity had remained broadly stable. Manufacturing output growth had risen again, with export supply chains supported by the past fall in sterling and some signs of increased domestic sourcing. But construction output growth had eased. Services turnover growth remained moderate.
- A survey of investment intentions pointed to continued modest growth in spending over the coming year, at a similar rate to that seen over the past twelve months. Expectations of investment growth in the following two years were weaker.
- Recruitment difficulties had intensified and were above normal in a range of activities, alongside continued modest employment growth. As a result, pay growth had edged up and was expected to be somewhat higher in 2018 than this year. But non‑labour input cost inflation had eased and both output and consumer price inflation were unchanged.