Sharp Brexit Slowdown in Services Sector Signals Recession, Economists Say

The PMI data makes it more likely that monetary policy will be loosened, it’s claimed

by Christopher Williams, Chief Business Correspondent

Britain’s services industry has suffered its largest month-on-month decline on record, according to a closely watched survey.

Markit’s Purchasing Manager’s Index (PMI) found that business activity in the largest segment of the economy in July was down by 4.9 points in the wake of the EU referendum, more than in any survey since data collection began in 1996.

The shock of Brexit broke a string of records. The steep fall in services output brought an abrupt end to three and a half years of uninterrupted growth. The rate of decline was the highest since March 2009, when the financial crisis was ripping into the wider economy.

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