May furniture production shows monthly decline

The rate of furniture production during May registered a monthly decline while the value in domestic goods increased on the previous month but fell against last year.

According to the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) data, the rate of furniture production rose 0.4% compared to March, but down 7.7% on April last year.

Production output fell by 0.6% in May 2023, following a fall of 0.2% in April 2023, revised up from a fall of 0.3%. Manufacturing fell by 0.2% in May 2023 after a fall of 0.1% in April 2023, revised up from a fall of 0.3%. Overall, production output grew 0.4% in the three months to May 2023, compared with the three months to February 2023, with growth of 0.8% in manufacturing being the largest positive contributor to growth in production output in that period.

Meanwhile, the value of the manufacture of furniture for May resulted at £883.3m, up 7.6% from £820.6m in April. Against the same period last year, the value fell 2.9% from £910.2m.

As for the value of furniture manufacturer exports, this increased 42.1% to £72.5m for the month from £51m. Against last year, exports value fell 14.6% from £84.9m. The value of domestic furniture manufacture increased 5.3% to £810.8m from £769.6m in the month, while down 1.7% from £825.3m last year.

Monthly real gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated to have fallen by 0.1% in May 2023 after growth of 0.2% in April 2023. Looking at the broader picture, GDP has shown no growth in the three months to May 2023.

Commenting on the GDP figures, ONS Director of Economic Statistics Darren Morgan said: “GDP fell slightly as manufacturing, energy generation and construction all fell back with some industries impacted by one fewer working day than normal. Meanwhile, despite the Coronation Bank Holiday, pubs and bars saw sales fall after a strong April. Employment agencies also saw another poor month.

“However, services were flat overall with health recovering, with less impact from strikes than in the previous month, and IT also had a strong month. Across the last three months as a whole the economy showed no growth.”

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