The rate of output growth accelerated further from July's recent low in November, with the pace of expansion reaching a ten-month high. Companies commonly linked the upturn in production to stronger client demand.
New order volumes also increased at the fastest pace since January, reportedly buoyed by greater marketing activity and a reduction in hesitancy among customers in placing orders. Foreign client demand also picked up midway through the final quarter, with new export orders increasing at the quickest rate since June. The upturn was often attributed by firms to greater interest from key export partners.
In line with stronger client demand, manufacturers expanded their workforce numbers, and at the fastest pace since March.
Pressure on capacity was also reflected in the first rise in backlogs of work since June.
Nonetheless, confidence among firms of a rise in output over the coming year remained historically subdued. Ongoing economic uncertainty reportedly weighed on expectations, as the level of optimism slipped to a three-month low.
On the price front, although inflationary pressures intensified in November, the rate of increase in input costs was relatively muted. Where a rise was reported, firms commonly linked this to higher raw material prices, often due to supplier shortages and tariffs. That said, others noted that increases were generally only slight overall. Output charges also rose at a modest pace, the rate of inflation rising to a four-month high, with manufacturers seeking to protect their margins by partly passing higher costs, including tariffs, on to clients.
Finally, goods producers recorded a second successive monthly increase in purchasing activity in November, reportedly stemming from greater production requirements and efforts to replenish stocks following stronger new order growth.