YORKSHIRE’S private sector firms reported a further rise in business activity during April, said a survey today.
The headline Lloyds TSB Yorkshire and Humber Business Activity Index – which measures the combined output of the region’s manufacturing and service sectors – registered at 53.1 – above the 50.0 no-change mark.
The index indicated a solid increase in output over the month – with the latest rise on a par with the UK average. However, the figure is down from 53.5 in March – as growth was the weakest in the current eight-month sequence of expansion.
About 37% of those polled reported a larger volume of new business during the latest survey period, while 25% reported a lower amount of incoming new work. Overall, new orders increased solidly in April, with the latest rise the strongest in 2012 so far.
Private sector employment in Yorkshire increased for the seventh consecutive month in April. However, the rate of job creation was only modest, having quickened only slightly from the sharp slowdown reported in March. While manufacturers hired additional staff in April, service providers reduced their numbers.
Firms reported increased costs during April.