By Max Clarke

The manufacturing purchasing manager’s index (PMI) survey, published today, shows the continuing strength of British industry; with the December 2010- January 2011 increase well above forecasts, and the largest monthly gain since the survey began in 1992

Commenting on the survey David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said:

“These figures are stronger than expected and confirm our assessment that Britain’s economic recovery is likely to continue, despite the disappointing decline in GDP in the fourth quarter of 2010. This new data also supports the BCC’s own quarterly survey published last month, which showed the recovery is still mainly being driven by manufacturing. It is also encouraging to see employment in the manufacturing sector at a record high.

“However, the recovery is fragile, especially as the austerity programme is now being enforced. We believe that the government must persevere with its deficit-cutting plan to stabilise our public finances. But this must be supplemented with policies to support growth, while the MPC should maintain low interest rates for some time.”