U.K. Services PMI Edges Up to 53.6 in September

By Wiktor SzaryFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

Business activity in Britain's heavy-weight service sector edged up in September from a nearly one-year low the previous month, but remained relatively subdued as weaker domestic demand dampened growth, a closely watched survey showed Wednesday.

Financial information firm IHS Markit Ltd. said its purchasing managers index for the services industry, which accounts for some 80% of the U.K. economy, rose to 53.6 in September, up from 53.2 in August, and above the expectations of analysts polled by The Wall Street Journal, who forecast a 0.2 points increase.

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The 50-point mark separates expansion from contraction.

September data also showed that businesses input cost inflation hit a seven-month high, with the rate among the fastest since early 2011, underscoring the continued inflationary pressures faced by services providers.

"The rise in price pressures will pour further fuel on expectations that the Bank of England will soon follow-up on its increasingly hawkish rhetoric and hike interest rates," said Chris Williamson, chief business economist at IHS Markit.

Write to Wiktor Szary at Wiktor.Szary@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 04, 2017 05:28 ET (09:28 GMT)