November 24, 2011 / 12:07 PM / 8 years ago

Bleak exports send UK factory orders tumbling

LONDON (Reuters) - British factory orders fell at their fastest pace in over a year in November due to a slump in euro zone export demand, the CBI’s monthly industrial trends survey showed on Thursday.

The Confederation of British Industry survey’s total order book balance fell to -19 this month from -18 in October, just below expectations of a reading of -18 and the lowest reading since October 2010.

The export order book balance fell to -31 from -14, its lowest reading since January 2010, while expectations remained weak, at -8 versus October’s figure of -11.

“Developments in the euro zone, and their impact on prospects for our major trading partners, are clearly hitting the UK manufacturing sector,” said CBI chief economic advisor Ian McCafferty.

“In response to weaker demand, firms still expect to cut back on production. With heightened uncertainty over global prospects and business confidence falling sharply, it is very possible that factories will see production slowing further in the near term.”

Reporting by Olesya Dmitracova, writing by David Milliken

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