Investing.com - Manufacturing activity in the U.K. expanded at the fastest pace in more than two years in June, easing concerns over the country's economic outlook, industry data showed on Monday.
In a report, market research group Markit said that its U.K. manufacturing PMI rose to a seasonally adjusted 52.5 in June from an upwardly revised reading of 51.5 in May.
Analysts had expected the manufacturing PMI to hold steady at 51.5 last month.
On the index, a reading above 50.0 indicates industry expansion, below indicates contraction.
Commenting on the report, Rob Dobson, senior economist at survey compiler Markit, said, "The survey suggests that manufacturing output rose by around 0.5% over the second quarter. Taken with recent signs of service sector strength and a stabilizing construction industry it paints a picture of UK economic growth picking up from the opening quarter's 0.3% to at least 0.5%."
He added that, "It therefore seems increasingly unlikely that the Bank of England's policymakers will opt for further asset purchases at its meeting later this week."
Following the release of the data, the pound spiked higher against the U.S. dollar, with GBP/USD adding 0.15% to trade at 1.5231.
Meanwhile, European stock markets remained mixed. The EURO STOXX 50 fell 0.3%, France's CAC 40 shed 0.3%, Germany's DAX dropped 0.8%, while London's FTSE 100 eased up 0.1%.
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