The latest PMI data shows UK manufacturing output expanded at its fastest pace in seven months for the month of June.
In the report from market research group Markit, the national manufacturing PMI was measured at 57.5, rising from May’s reading of 57.0 in May.
The outcome has defied analysts, who had predicted the index to dip to 56.8 in June, and signals manufacturing expansion for the sixteenth consecutive month.
The report for June also shows the average index reading during the second quarter of this year is the highest since the first quarter of 2011.
“We expect official manufacturing production to have expanded in the second quarter at a pace above the 1.5% registered in the first quarter, making further headway into recovering pre-crisis output levels.”
As well as supporting the BOE’s forecasts for economic growth of more than 3% in 2014, the continued strength of U.K. business activity indicators increases the likelihood that the central bank will raise rates from the historically low level of 0.50% before 2015.