Closely watched survey has shown that staff and supply shortages have taken its toll on the UK’s economic recovery.

The IHS Markit/CIPS Composite Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for August hit a six-month low of 55.3 which indicate a fall from 59.2 in July.

CIPS group director, Duncan Brock said the figures were “a stark warning”.

IHS Markit economist, Chris Williamson said, “Despite Covid-19 containment measures easing to the lowest since the pandemic began, rising virus case numbers are deterring many forms of spending, notably by consumers, and have hit growth via worsening staff and supply shortages.

“Supplier delays have risen to a degree exceeded only once before – in the initial months of the pandemic – and the number of companies reporting that output had fallen due to staff or materials shortages have risen far above anything ever seen previously in more than 20 years of survey history.”

Researchers said any reading above 50 indicates growth but the bounce-back from the pandemic is losing momentum.

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