Bank holidays hit manufacturing

Royal wedding and Japan quake hit manufacturing

Manufacturing saw its biggest monthly drop for two and a half years in April, as the royal wedding bank holiday hit production.

Office for National Statistics (ONS) said manufacturing fell by 1.5 per cent between March and April, as the wider index of production, which includes sectors such as mining and energy supply, fell 1.7 per cent.

The run of bank holidays in April, combined with the impact the Japanese earthquake had on supply chains, caused an “unusual month” for the sector, the ONS said.

Economists said the figures raised concerns over the strength of the previously buoyant manufacturing sector and the pace of the wider economic recovery.

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