By Max Clarke

Overall profit margins for UK companies have risen to 12.7%, revised up from the previous estimate of 12.5%.

The figure for the same period last year, data published today by the Office for National Statistics show, stood at 11.7%. This year-on-year gain is a marked improvement, prompting fresh hopes in the private sector recovery.

The figures represent quarterly change, a more volatile measure than yearly figures which have remained largely unchanged over the past decade.

Capital intensive industries like manufacturing have retained narrower profit margins due- currently 9%, whilst service industries have reached 16%.

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