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News Release Purchasing Managers’ Index® MARKET SENSITIVE INFORMATION EMBARGOED UNTIL: 09:30 (UK), 5 November 2014 Markit/CIPS UK Services PMI ® Activity growth down to 17-month low Data collected 13-29 October Activity growth continues to weaken Key Points:  Both activity and new business rise at slower rates in October  Business sentiment also weakens  Employment rises at strongest pace for three months Summary: UK service sector growth was sustained during October, but at the sl
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    Page 1 of 4   © Markit Economics Limited 2014   News Release Purchasing Managers’ Index  ® MARKET SENSITIVE INFORMATION EMBARGOED UNTIL: 09:30 (UK), 5 November 2014 Markit/CIPS UK Services PMI ®   Activity growth down to 17-month low Data collected 13-29 October Key Points:     Both activity and new business rise at slower rates in October   Business sentiment also weakens   Employment rises at strongest pace for three months Summary:  UK service sector growth was sustained during October, but at the slowest rate in 17 months amid reports of some market uncertainty creeping into client decision-making. Although new work also continued to rise sharply, it did so at the slowest rate for five months. Business confidence weakened slightly as a result to a level below its historical average, while average charges were reduced fractionally for the first time in 17 months. Nonetheless, companies recruited additional staff to the greatest degree in three months as capacity remained under some pressure, which was highlighted by a further increase in work outstanding. The seasonally adjusted Business Activity Index posted 56.2 in October, down from 58.7 in September. Latest data marked the second successive monthly fall in the headline index, and October’s reading was the lowest recorded for 17 months, although the implied rate of growth remained above the average for over 18 years of data collection. New business growth was again the principal prop to higher activity. October’s data indicated the twenty-second successive monthly increase in incoming new work, and respondents commented on success in securing new work via higher marketing and improved client engagement. Activity growth continues to weaken Slower increase in new business recorded    Page 2 of 4   © Markit Economics Limited 2014   However, a number of companies commented that new business (and activity) were currently at elevated levels and October had proven to be a slower month in terms of demand growth compared to earlier in the year. There were also several reports of uncertainty creeping into client decision making. The net result was a slowdown in the rate of new business growth to a five-month low. The weaker rise in new work had some impact on business confidence, with some companies choosing to re-evaluate their forecasts for the coming 12 months. Although business expectations remained in positive territory, with firms planning new product launches and higher investment, overall confidence was the lowest in two months and below the survey’s historical average.  Despite tentative signs of slower growth, companies remained suitably encouraged to take on additional staff not only to deal with current workloads (backlogs of work rose again in October) but also to support future company expansion. Latest data showed the sharpest rise in employment for three months.  Anecdotal evidence implied that recruitment was taking place against the backdrop of a tighter labour market, with salaries and demands for pay increasing. Wage cost pressures were reportedly the principal driver of another round of input price inflation in October. Finally, strong competition and efforts to entice clients led to a fractional fall in output charges, the first such reduction for 17 months. Employment rises at firmer pace   Comment: Chris Williamson, Chief Economist at Markit, which compiles the survey : “  Slower service sector growth knocks the prospect of interest rate hikes firmly on the head, adding to an increasingly downbeat flow of economic data in recent weeks which has thrown a cloud of uncertainty over the outlook. “A  sharp easing of service sector growth to the weakest since May of last year comes on the heels of data showing construction growth sliding to a five-month low and the goods-producing sector shifting down a gear since earlier in the year. “   After GDP growth slowed to 0.7% in the third quarter, a 0.5% expansion is currently being signalled by the surveys for the fourth quarter. However, with inflows of work rising across all three sectors at the slowest rate for 16 months, there is a risk that economic growth could weaken further. “The surveys also point to lower inflation in coming months: average prices charged for goods and services fell, albeit only slightly, for the first time since July 2012. “  The surveys therefore suggest that the Bank of England will wait to gauge the full extent of the slowdown before making any decisions on policy. ” David Noble, Group Chief Executive Officer at the Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply:   “  This month appears to be a slowdown month as the services sector comes off the boil, challenged by capacity constraints, increased backlogs and a slight reduction in new business growth. “  Procurement professionals reports tiptoeing through a time of uncertainty, as suppliers demonstrate stronger bargaining power in tighter market conditions. “   After the scramble to regain former heights seen in the last year comes a period of reflection and re-balance while positive sentiment remains high and levels of staffing are increased. Coupled with the rise in employment levels comes increased input  prices with higher wage demands and more competition. “  Finally, with a possible interest rate rise looming, and an associated dampening in confidence, the sector simmers at a more even temperature. ”       Page 3 of 4   © Markit Economics Limited 2014  The November Report on Services will be published on Wednesday 3 rd  December 2014 at 09:30 -Ends- Contact Information: For economics comments, data and technical queries, please call: Joanna Vickers  Tel: +44 207 260 2234 Email:  joanna.vickers@markit.com  For industry comments, please call: CIPS Trudy Salandiak Tel: +44 1780 761576 Email: trudy.salandiak@cips.org  Hill & Knowlton Strategies  Emily Franca Tel: +44 (0)20 7973 5987 Email: emily.franca@hkstrategies.com  Notes to Editors: Where appropriate, please refer to the survey as the Markit/CIPS UK Services PMI ® . The Markit/CIPS UK Services PMI covers transport & communication, financial intermediation, business services, personal services, computing & IT and hotels & restaurants. Each response received is weighted each month according to the size of the company to which the questionnaire refers and the contribution to total service sector output accounted for by the sub-sector to which that company belongs. This therefore ensures that replies from larger companies have a greater impact on the final index numbers than replies from small companies. The results are presented by question asked, showing the percentage of respondents reporting an improvement, deterioration or no change on the previous month. From these percentages an index is derived such that a level of 50.0 signals no change on the previous month.  Above 50.0 signals an increase (or improvement), below 50.0 a decrease (or deterioration). The greater the divergence from 50.0, the greater the rate of change signalled. The indexes are calculated by assigning weights to the percentages: the percentage of respondents reporting an improvement/increase are given a weight of 1.0, the percentage reporting no change are given a weight of 0.5 and the percentage reporting a deterioration/decrease are given a weight of 0.0. Thus, if 100% of the survey panel report an increase , the index would read 100. If 100% reported no change the index would read 50 (100 x 0.5), and so on. Markit do not revise underlying survey data after first publication, but seasonal adjustment factors may be revised from time to time as appropriate which will affect the seasonally adjusted data series. Historical data relating to the underlying (unadjusted) numbers, first published seasonally adjusted series and subsequently revised data are available to subscribers from Markit. Please contact economics@markit.com.  About Markit Markit is a leading global diversified provider of financial information services. We provide products that enhance transparency, reduce risk and improve operational efficiency. Our customers include banks, hedge funds, asset managers, central banks, regulators, auditors, fund administrators and insurance companies. Founded in 2003, we employ over 3,000 people in 10 countries. Markit shares are listed on NASDAQ under the symbol “MRKT”. For more information, please see  www.markit.com  About PMI Purchasing Managers’ Index  ®  ( PMI  ® ) surveys are now available for 32 countries and also for key regions including the Eurozone. They are the most closely-watched business surveys in the world, favoured by central banks, financial markets and business decision makers for their    Page 4 of 4   © Markit Economics Limited 2014   ability to provide up-to-date, accurate and often unique monthly indicators of economic trends. To learn more go to www.markit.com/economics.  About CIPS The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS) is the world’s largest procurement and supply professional organisation. It is the worldwide centre of excellence on purchasing and supply management issues. CIPS has a global community of 100,000 in 150 countries, including senior business people, high-ranking civil servants and leading academics. The activities of procurement and supply chain professionals have a major impact on the profitability and efficiency of all types of organisation and CIPS offers corporate solutions packages to improve business profitability. www.cips.org  The intellectual property rights to the UK Services PMI  ®   provided herein are owned by or licensed to Markit Economics Limited. Any unauthorised use, including but not limited to copying, distributing, transmitting or otherwise of any data appearing is not permitted wit hout Markit’s prior consent. Markit shall not have any liability, duty or obligation for or relating to the content or informa tion (“data”) contained herein, any errors, inaccuracies, omissions or delays in the data, or for any actions taken in reliance thereon. In no event shall Markit be liable for any special, incidental, or consequential damages, arising out of the use of the data. Purchasing Managers' Index  ®   and PMI  ®   are either registered trade marks of Markit Economics Limited or licensed to Markit Economics Limited. CIPS use the above marks under license. Markit is a registered trade mark of Markit Group Limited.
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