December 2023 furniture production shows slight monthly rise

The rate of furniture production during December registered a slight monthly increase whilethe value in domestic goods declined on the previous month and against last year.

According to the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) data, the rate of furniture production rose 1.2% compared to November, while falling 8% on December last year.

On the month, production output is estimated to have grown by 0.6% in December 2023, driven by growth in manufacturing output.

Meanwhile, the value of the manufacture of furniture for December resulted at £640.5m, down 29% from £902.4m in November. Against the same period last year, the value fell 10.4% from £715m.

As for the value of furniture manufacturer exports, this increased 68.7% to £86.4m for the month from £51.2m. Against last year, exports value rose 50.2% from £57.5m. The value of domestic furniture manufacture decreased 34.9% to £554.1m from £851.2m in the month, while also down 15.7% from £657.5m last year.

Monthly GDP is estimated to have fallen by 0.1% in December 2023, following a growth of 0.2% in November (revised down from 0.3% growth) and a fall of 0.5% in October (revised down from a 0.3% fall).

When compared as a full year, the rate of furniture production for 2023 fell 10.9% compared to 2022, with the total value of the manufacture of furniture resulting at £10.3bn, down 4.6% from £10.8bn year-on-year. The value of exports fell 20% to £794.7m from £1bn, while the value of domestic furniture manufacture declined 2% to £9.5bn from £9.7bn.

Commenting on the GDP figures, ONS Director of Economic Statistics Liz McKeown said: “Our initial estimate shows the UK economy contracted in the fourth quarter of 2023. While it has now shrunk for two consecutive quarters, across 2023 as a whole the economy has been broadly flat.

“All the main sectors fell on the quarter, with manufacturing, construction and wholesale being the biggest drags on growth, partially offset by increases in hotels and rentals of vehicles and machinery.

“The latest data showed that health and education performed less well than initially estimated in both October and November. Early indications suggest they both contracted in December. Retail and wholesale were the biggest overall downwards pulls on the economy in December, partially offset by growth in computer programming and manufacturing.”

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