Yorkshire enjoys employment growth high

Written by Greg Parkinson

Employment growth in Yorkshire has hit a 13-month high, according to the latest Lloyds Bank Regional Purchasing Managers’ (PMI) survey.

The increase comes after September’s figures revealed the first month of employment growth in Yorkshire since January. In November, businesses in Yorkshire hired staff at the highest rate in more than a year; and through October and November, job creation in the region was higher than that in the rest of the UK.

However, business activity in the region has risen at a slower pace than the UK average (55.2). The Yorkshire & Humber PMI is down to a four-month low at 54.0.

The Lloyds Bank Regional PMI is a national economic ‘health-check’, based on responses from manufacturers and service businesses about the value of goods and services produced during November compared to the previous month.

Companies reporting higher activity attributed this to new product launches and success in gaining new customers. However, market uncertainty is also weighing on growth.

The instability in Sterling has contributed to the largest rise in costs in more than 5 ½ years, which Yorkshire businesses have compensated for in the form of higher prices charged for goods and services.

Lloyds Commercial Banking commented that the continued growth in employment suggested a ‘confident outlook,’ despite a slow-down in output.

“However, companies’ profit margins were hit hard as the weakness of the Pound led to the steepest rise in costs since April 2011. The rise in costs reported by Yorkshire businesses in November was also higher than in any other region bar Northern Ireland,” commented Leigh Taylor, Regional Director for SME banking at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.

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