This week’s calendar looks rather short on data as we head for the Christmas break:
Will manufacturing investment hold up?
On Friday, the ONS will release its final estimate for Q3 GDP. Not much excitement is expected on that front with the data likely to confirm UK GDP grew by a solid 0.5% in the penultimate quarter of 2016.
Our attention will be directed at the first manufacturing investment figures since the EU referendum. Manufacturing investment has seen a healthy first half to the year, growing by 3.8% and 0.8% in Q1 and Q2 2016 respectively. However, investment levels remain lower by 4.8% when compared to the same period last year, indicating a hesitation by manufacturers to splash the cash ahead of the EU referendum.
EEF’s Manufacturing Outlook and the Bank of England’s investment intentions survey suggest that manufacturing investment is likely to lose momentum in Q3 before regaining some ground in the final quarter of the year. Further forward, our Investment Monitor report points to a slowdown – but by no means a collapse – in manufacturers’ capital expenditure plans over the next two years as uncertainty – both Brexit and non-Brexit related – weighs on the sector.