By Marcus Leach

Data released today (Tuesday) by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has shown that the UK's manufacturing output was 0.3% lower in August than in July.

The official government data showed that compared with a year ago, it was 1.5% higher, which represents the lowest annual growth since February 2010.

The largest contributions to the month on month fall in manufacturing output were the manufacture of wood and paper products industries which fell by 3.2 per cent, followed by the manufacture of basic metals and metal products industries which fell by 1.5 per cent.

In contrast, the manufacture of food, beverages and tobacco industries rose by 1.0 per cent in August 2011 compared to July 2011, the main contribution came from manufacture of alcoholic beverages which increased by 2.9 per cent. Anecdotal evidence suggests an increase in exports to Asia, particularly spirits.

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