Factory orders fell far further than forecasts in July, but Robin Johnson, partner and head of the industrial engineering group at international law firm Eversheds, says the manufacturers he speaks to are confident
The manufacturing industry slowdown continued in July with British factory orders falling to -10 this month, further than the -2 that had been forecast.
Price pressures hit their lowest point in the last 1-1/2 years and according to the CBI, optimism dropped. Mr Johnson comments:
“While the figures indicate deterioration in confidence, from an anecdotal perspective, the conversation at our manufacturing dinners, (one held in London and one in Birmingham in the last two weeks) has demonstrated that exports remain firm. Whilst recognising the need to innovate, SMEs and mid-level businesses remain relatively protected in core industries such as automotive, aerospace and IT supply.
“It is important however that the government recognises the need to review R&D fiscal measures encourage training and give meaningful support to trade shows throughout the next few months if the industry confidence levels are to be bolstered.
“The UK manufacturing industry has moved on from the recession. Funding remains tight but on the whole the view from manufacturers is that if export growth is thrown into the mix, it can weather the storm whilst awaiting the expected uplift in government spending in 2013.”