Region's firms got busier at the outset of the new year, says Lloyds Magazine

Business activity at Yorkshire & Humber private sector firms increased at the sharper rate at the outset of 2016 held up by a faster expansion in new orders C?but growth remained in the UK averages, as per the Lloyd’s Bank Yorkshire and Humber Business Activity Index.

On a less positive note, employment growth slowed to some 26-month low. For the price front, input prices decreased further, while charges were unchanged.

Contributing into a faster expansion operational activity, new orders rose for a sharper rate. In accordance with anecdotal evidence, greater demand from existing clients led to the rise in new orders. Having said that, comparable to activity, new company increased at the weaker rate than seen along the UK in general, says Leigh Taylor, pictured, Lloyds’ regional director?for SME Banking during the North East.

“Continuing the trend observed since June 2013, private sector firms in the region hired additional workers in January. However, the rate of job creation slowed towards weakest since November 2013, and then to a pace that had been softer compared to the UK average. For the sector level, manufacturers reported a decline in workforce numbers, while providers signalled little increase,” he stated.

“The upturn inside Yorkshire and Humber economy strengthened at the beginning of 2016. Both business activity and new orders expanded at stronger rates. However, in the two caser, growth remained under the UK average suggesting the region will continue to lag behind the nation’s trend. Employment growth eased to some 26-month low, highlighting maybe a not enough confidence in the sustainability from the upturn.

“On a more positive note, reduced oil and also other commodity prices helped to ease pressures on firms’ margins, while prices charged remained unchanged as firms continued to handle strong competitive pressures.”

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