Manufacturing output edges up amid concerns over costs

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The Independent Online

Manufacturers continued to increase output last month, but the latest snapshot of the sector pointed to a slight easing of activity and firms flagged up concerns over potentially inflationary cost pressures.

The Markit/CIPS Purchasing Managers' Index, where any figure above 50 signals growth, fell slightly to 56.7 in September. August's 57.1 reading was the highest in two years. "This could be a blip in an... upward sloping trend. Recoveries are seldom a straight-line affair," said Alan Clarke of Scotia Bank.

Input and output prices also rose. "This has in part been caused by shipping delays... signalling the sector could be hit with further input price rises," said CIPS chief executive David Noble.