January 9, 2009

Britain’s factory output falls

Factory output in Britain dropped 2.9 percent in November, the sharpest monthly drop in 30 years, an economic report said.

On a year-over-year basis, manufacturing output has fallen 7.4 percent, the British Broadcasting Corp. reported Friday.

ING economist James Knightley said the British economy could contract 3 percent in 2009.

Industrial output has now fallen for nine straight months "¦ so the pressure for further stimulus will continue, he said.

On Thursday, the Bank of England cut its key lending rate to 1.5 percent to restore lending to businesses and consumers and push liquidity into the financial system.

Still, it's not a good time to be in industry, Paul Dales, an economist at Capital Economics, said.