Services sector expands again on back of new export business

Investec barometer points to strong pick-up in customer demand and new business


Activity in Ireland’s services sector continues to expand with new export growth driving the trend.

Investec’s latest purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for the services industry rose to 58.7 in September, well above the 50 mark that separates growth from contraction.

Panellists reported growth in the New Business subcategory, extending the run of above-50 readings for this component to 62 months, both from at home and abroad.

The New Export Business component revealed substantial growth, part-driven by higher demand from the UK, in contrast to the findings of the Manufacturing PMI earlier this week, with the rate of increase in overseas demand quickening to the fastest since February.

Helped by this strong demand, the Business Outstanding component rose at its fastest pace for eight months.

A a result, firms took on extra staff during the month, helping the Employment component continue a sequence of above-50 readings that commenced in September 2012.