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- July 7, 2017
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British manufacturing slipped unexpectedly in May, dragged down by a fall in car production that will add to questions about the economic outlook going into the second half of 2017, official data showed on Friday.
Manufacturing output edged down by a monthly 0.2 percent, cancelling out its rise in April and disappointing against forecasts for a 0.5 percent rise in a poll of economists, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
Broader industrial output data also disappointed, falling 0.1 percent in May after a 0.2 percent rise in April, and against expectations in the poll for a 0.4 percent increase.
The manufacturing figures were hit by a 4.4 percent drop on the month in motor vehicle production, the biggest fall since February last year and tallying with industry figures showing a fall in new car registrations.
Britain’s economy slowed in early 2017 after it initially withstood the shock of the decision by voters to leave the European Union in a referendum in June 2016.
In annual terms, industrial production was 0.2 percent lower in May, again disappointing against forecasts for an increase of 0.2 percent. Manufacturing output was 0.4 percent higher than in May 2016.