Growth in Britain's construction sector unexpectedly accelerated to a four-month high in April, adding to tentative signs that the economy might be recovering a little momentum, according to the latest PMI figures from IHS Markit yesterday.
The Index (PMI) rose to 53.1 from 52.2 in March, against expectations for a slight fall. The sector was boosted in the month of April, according to the survey, by increased residential housebuilding activity, which essentially means that more houses were built. The data release followed a day after IHS Markit's PMI data showed that the UK's manufacturing sector is moving at "such a pace that suppliers are struggling to keep up with demand."
Speaking in Downing Street after meeting the Queen yesterday, Theresa May commented that : "We continue to believe that no deal is better for Britain than a bad deal. But we want a deal. We want a deep and special partnership with the European Union. And we want the EU to succeed."
May added that the UK had been "misrepresented" in European newspapers, saying that the negotiating position of the European Commission had "hardened" and that Britain had been "threatened" by European politicians and officials.
The ISM non-manufacturing index rose to 57.5 for April from 55.2 in March, above consensus expectations of 55.8, in the 88th consecutive month of growth. Sixteen non-manufacturing industries reported growth in April, while only one reported contraction.
U.S. companies hired workers at a slower pace in April, while the domestic services sector grew more than expected, which supports the view that economic expansion remains on track despite a weak first quarter. An improving labour market and faster activity in services industries last month also supported traders' expectations the Federal Reserve would raise interest rates further in the coming months
In a bullish statement following policy meeting the central bank said consumer spending continued to be solid, business investment had firmed and inflation has been "running close" to the Fed's target. The Federal Reserve kept interest rates unchanged and downplayed weak first-quarter economic growth while emphasizing the strength of the labour market, hinting they still expect two more rate rises this year.
In last nights final TV debate a viewers poll had French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron as more impressive than rival Marine Le Pen with 63% favouring the pro-European former Investment banker. The candidates traded insults for more than two hours, arguing over topics ranging from terrorism, the economy, and Europe.
09:30 – GBP : Services PMI, expected at 54.6 against a previous 55.0
13:30 – USD : Unemployment Claims, expected at 246K against a previous of 257K
17:30 – EUR : ECB President Draghi Speaks