Activity in the UK services sector slowed in January for the first time in four months, according to the survey of private company Markit. The Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) dropped from 56.2 points in December (which was a 15-month high) to 54.5 points in January, which was one of the lowest estimates of the analysts.
Aarlier this week there was a slowdown in activity in the smaller sectors of industry and construction. However, the experts of Markit indicated that the data still talk about economic growth of 0.5% in the first quarter of 2017, which coincides with the expectations of the Bank of England.
The optimism for the coming year rose to its highest level in a year and a half, improving in all sectors, and this suggests that the slowdown in January may be only temporary.
Companies in the services sector say that they are more optimistic because of new orders, products and markets, due to low interest rates and because of the clarity of the departure of Britain from the European Union.