Better in UK for services but industry struggles

LONDON (Reuters) – Britain’s private sector decline improved slightly in December despite a slowdown in the manufacturing sector, according to preliminary Purchasing Managers’ Survey (PMI) results published on Friday by S&P Global.

The “flash” composite PMI rose to 49.0 in December from 48.2 last month, as the consensus among economists polled by Reuters gave it down to 48.0.

This improvement can be attributed to services, with the sectoral “flash” PMI up to 50.0 from 48.8 last month and the 48.5 expected by consensus among economists.

A number above 50.0 indicates an expansion of activity and a number below this threshold, a contraction.

The preliminary index for the manufacturing sector is down to 44.7 against 46.5 in December and 46.3 expected by economists polled by Reuters.

“December figures reinforce the likelihood that the UK is in recession, with PMI indicating a 0.3% fall in gross domestic product in the fourth quarter following a 0.2% fall in the end of the September three months,” said Chris Williamson, chief. economist at S&P Global.

(Laetitia Volga, Editing by Blandine Hénault)

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