Latest data released by Markit/CIPS - 5 May 2020

  • Composite PMI 13.8 vs 12.9 prelim

The preliminary report can be found here. Slightly better final readings but it doesn't take away from the record declines in activity, new work, and employment. Markit notes that:

"April's PMI data highlights that the downturn in the UK economy during the second quarter of 2020 will be far deeper and more widespread than anything seen in living memory.

"Historical comparisons of the PMI with GDP indicate that the April survey reading is consistent with the economy falling at a quarterly rate of approximately 7%, but we expect the actual decline in GDP could be even greater, in part because the PMI excludes the vast majority of the self-employed and the retail sector.

"Just one-in-five service providers managed to avoid a drop in business activity since March, and those hardest hit by social distancing measures and travel restrictions often reported complete stoppages of business operations.

"While output, new work and employment indices all hit all-time lows in April, survey respondents indicated a tentative upturn in their business expectations amid hopes that a gradual re-opening of the economy can be achieved in the summer. However, service providers looking to re-establish business operations overwhelmingly commented that capacity would remain well below previous levels for an extended period and any timings remain highly uncertain.

"Those relying on travel, social gatherings or face-to-face business continue to report severe cash flow concerns and mounting worries about retaining staff without an extended period of government support."