Sector growth leads to rise in employment

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STRONG growth in Scotland’s private sector economy last month led to the steepest monthly rise in employment since July 2007, according to new figures out today.

Bank of Scotland analysis suggested output at private sector businesses grew at the quickest rate for a year. The bank said the results suggested the beginning of a reverse in the slowdown seen at the end of last year. It suggested stronger growth was in part the result of a faster increase in incoming new business.

The bank’s Purchase Managers Index, which monitors activity across Scotland’s manufacturing and service industries, rose from February’s 51.7 mark to 54.1, the sharpest increase in output for 12 months. It was the 15th straight monthly increase in total private sector output. The report found growth had accelerated faster in service sector activity, with production increasing at a more modest pace.