A new MarkIt Report shows strongest growth in the Service Sector since 2006.
The July 2013 report by MarkIt and the Chartered Institute of Purchasing and Supply (CIPS) shows that the UK service sector expanded at its quickest pace for over six-and-a-half years in July as new business continued to rise strongly amid evidence of an improvement in market conditions. Markit is a research company collating data from over 700 service companies to assess market conditions. Ten-Percent Legal Recruitment is one of the panel members.
The strong gain in new work placed pressure on capacity, leading to a marked increase in backlogs of work and encouraged solid payroll growth.
Service providers were also optimistic about future activity levels while, on the price front, output charges were raised to the greatest degree since June 2011.
Supporting activity growth through 2013 has been continual gains in new business. July was no different, with sales rising at the strongest rate since November 2006. Underlying demand was reported to be stronger and market conditions improving both at home and abroad. Good weather and a pick-up in the housing market provided further boosts to activity and sales during the latest survey period. Strong growth of new business led to capacity pressures during July, as highlighted by the sharpest rise in backlogs of work since February 2000.
Backlogs have now risen for four months in a row, and continued increases in work outstanding encouraged a further rise in employment. July’s survey marked the seventh month in succession that payroll numbers have increased, with the latest data showing a solid rate of growth that was little moved on June’s near six-year peak.
Employment also increased as part of business expansion plans as confidence regarding future activity improved to its highest level for 15 months.
Panellists are widely expecting the recent upturn in economic conditions to continue, with new product plans and geographical expansion also cited as reasons to be optimistic. There were a number of reports that wages paid to staff had been raised.
Service providers were able to pass on a proportion of their higher input costs to clients.