Investing.com - The strong upswing in the U.K. manufacturing sector continued in February, according to data released on Monday, with jobs growth in the sector accelerating to a 33-month high.
The Markit U.K. manufacturing purchasing managers’ index for February came in at 56.9, up from a revised 56.6 in January. Analysts had expected the index to tick down to 56.5.
The strengthening domestic market continued to be the main driver of the recovery in the manufacturing recovery, Markit said, with production output rising for an eleventh successive month.
However, growth in new export orders eased from January’s almost three-year record, due in large part to the recent appreciation of sterling.
The employment index rose at its fastest pace since May 2011, rising to 55.4 from 54.1 in January, as the improved performance of the sector encouraged companies to take on more staff.
“The survey suggests we should expect another quarter of robust economic growth in the opening quarter of the year,” Rob Dobson, senior economist at Markit said.
“This mini-renaissance in manufacturing is also driving the sharpest job creation since the middle of 2011, which will support the broader economic recovery through improved consumer confidence and spending."