The industry body EEF’s survey revealed manufacturers are confident about the outlook, translated into record-high levels of recruitment as well as strong investment intentions.
While 30 per cent more firms are expecting an increase in UK transactions, a similar number are expecting growth from exports.
EEF chief economist, Lee Hopley, said: “This is the most positive set of indicators we have seen for some time, demonstrating that we’ve not just turned the corner, we’re actively heading down the right road.
“Manufacturers are clearly feeling more confident as their order books fill up and exports are strong. It is now vital that Government does all that it can to underpin support for companies, giving manufacturers the confidence to fulfil their investment and recruitment plans.”
The EEF said the positive trend is forecast to continue in the next quarter.
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