UK manufacturing output falls in January

Car manufacturing Image copyright Getty Images

Activity in the UK's industrial and construction sectors slowed in January, new figures show.

The Office for National Statistics said industrial output contracted by 0.4% compared with December, when it fell by 0.9%.

Manufacturing was responsible for the decline, particularly the "highly erratic" pharmaceuticals sector, where output tumbled by 13.5%.

Construction fell by 0.4% in January, down from previous growth of 1.8%.

Meanwhile the UK's deficit in goods and services remained at £2bn in January, the same as in December.

Exports rose by £400m, while imports increased by £300 million.

Within the industrial sector, manufacturing fell by 0.9% between December and January.

Over the three month to January, however, growth was stronger. Industrial output rose by 1.9% after manufacturing expanded at 2.1% - the fastest pace since May 2010.

Construction also expanded by 1.8% for the three months to January.

The UK's trade gap shrank by £4.7bn to £6.4bn on rising exports of oil, machinery and transport equipment.

Kate Davies, senior statistician at the ONS, said: "Taking the last three months together, construction and manufacturing both grew strongly, with considerable narrowing in Britain's trade deficit."

Related Topics

More on this story