UK April Services PMI out of contraction
Head of Macro Analysis
Summary: At face value, the latest UK services PMI print suggests a new level of confidence in British industry. But don't be fooled – Brexit anxiety still weighs heavily on the economy and credit growth is shockingly bad for a developed country.
The big picture
Our view for the British economy has not changed much over the past few months. Brexit uncertainty remains a key issue, but the number one issue is the lack of new credit growth. Our in-house credit impulse for the UK, which leads the real economy by nine to 12 months, is running at -2.2% of GDP, one of the weakest levels seen in developed countries.
All the other leading indicators also point to downside risks as Brexit anxiety is still hurting confidence and business. The UK OECD leading indicator, which is designed to anticipate turning points in the economy six to nine months ahead, fell in February for the 19th straight month. The year-on-year rate started 2018 at minus 0.6%; it now stands at -1.52%, which is quite a swing over such a period of time.
In addition, new car registrations, which are viewed as a leading indicator of the wider economy in the UK, have been tracking downwards since 2016, driven by falling consumer confidence. The drop since the pre-Brexit referendum is stunning – about 12%! The UK economy may still be able to run above potential for a few more quarters, mostly due to stockpiling for Brexit but, as one of its key drivers, new credit, is vanishing, it will ultimately lead to less growth and increased risk.
Latest Market Insights
Quarterly Outlook Q3 2022: The Runaway Train
- Central banks' attempts to kill inflation is a paradigm shift, which could end in a deep recession.
Tangible assets and profitable growth are the winnersWith US equities officially in a bear market, the big question is where and when is the bottom in the current drawdown?
Understanding the lack of investment appetite among oil majorsThe everything rally seen in recent quarters has become more uneven, as its strength is driven by commodities in short supply.
The pressure is on as the wind leaves the sailsWith cryptocurrencies in sharp decline, are we entering a crypto winter or is the bear market a healthy clean-up of the crypto space?
Why the Fed can never catch up and what turns the US dollar lower?Many other central banks are set to eventually outpace the Fed in hiking rates, taking their real interest rates to levels higher than the Fed will achieve.
Bank of Japan: Swimming against the tideThe Japanese economy has gone from the age of deflation to rapidly rising prices in no time, leaving the Bank of Japan in a pickle.
Green transformation detour and bear market hibernationWith the impending risk of global econonomic derailment, we share the five things investors need to consider in this new half year.
Crisis redux for the eurozone?Whether there's going to be a recession in Europe or not, the path towards a stable economy will be agonizing.
Technical Outlook: Gold, Oil and a remarkable multi-decade perspective on EquitiesThe Nasdaq bubble pattern, USDJPY resistance, crude oil uptrend losing steam and the technical outlook for USD.
China: the train of new development paradigm left the station two years agoChina is transiting to a new development paradigm, as they are hit by deteriorating terms of trade, a slower global economy and an uncertain future while continuing attempts to contain the pandemic.