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The results for October indicate that business turnover continued to increase, but has slowed to the lowest rate of growth in the last six months and remains below pre-pandemic levels.
Compared to September, most industries in the manufacturing and services sectors are continuing to expand, except for the accommodation and food services sector and other services subsector.
In October, compared to one month ago, the all-industry turnover index is 54.0, indicating that more companies have reported increasing sales than decreasing sales, continuing the recovery after large decreases in March and April.
Compared to 12 months ago, the all-industry business turnover index is 42.7, up from 41.0 in September. This reinforces the indication that there has been a further increase in business activity between September and October but demonstrates that most companies still report lower sales than last year.
Although the index has increased again in the latest month, it does not give a direct indication of the actual size of any increase in total turnover, or in GDP as a whole. Estimates of Monthly GDP for October will be published on 18th December 2020.
About This Release
The Monthly Business Turnover Index is based on the ONS Monthly Business Survey and Retail Sales Inquiry. These are the largest data sources used for GDP statistics, and cover the output of around half the economy.
The index is similar to the IHSMarkit PMI indicators. It reports the net balance of firms reporting increasing or decreasing turnover, in real terms, compared to last month and to 12 months ago. An index value of 50 is in balance and indicates that turnover is broadly unchanged compared to last month or 12 months ago. Values below 50 indicate that more companies are showing decreased turnover than increased turnover, broadly indicating falling sales, whereas values above 50 indicate increasing sales.
Further information on these statistics is available here.