YORKSHIRE firms reported a slowdown in activity today.

The latest Purchase Managers’ Index from Lloyds TSB showed that growth in the region during June continued to under-perform the UK average.

New business volumes rose at the weakest rate since September, 2010, while output levels increased only slightly during the latest survey period.

As a result, firms reduced staffing levels for the first time since May, 2010.

The headline Lloyds TSB Yorkshire & Humber Business Activity Index, which measures the combined output of the region’s manufacturing and service sectors. stood at 51.1 in June from 50.8 in May and continued to indicate output growth for the 25th consecutive month.

Martyn Kendrick, area director for Lloyds TSB Commercial in Yorkshire, said: “Yorkshire and Humber concluded the second quarter of 2011 by registering the second-slowest rise in activity of all the English regions.

“This partly reflected new order growth easing further from January’s peak to its slowest pace for nine months.”

He added: “Overall, the subdued performance of the Yorkshire and Humber regional economy was evident in both the manufacturing and service sectors.”