Better news – just – on the business front with a new survey showing that Scotland’s private sector received a higher volume of new business in May.
The rate of expansion quickened to the joint-quickest in nine months.
But the increase in new work hasn’t led to a rise in output, which remained broadly unchanged. And workforce numbers fell for the sixth successive month amid a further deterioration of outstanding business levels.
Elsewhere, price pressures continued as both output charges and input costs rose.
The seasonally adjusted headline Bank of Scotland PMI – a single-figure measure of the month-on-month change in combined manufacturing and services output – fell fractionally to 49.9 in May after registering 50.0 in April.
The latest figure pointed to broadly stable output in Scotland’s private sector.
The increase in new business levels was driven by Scotland’s manufacturers, who reported the sharpest rise in 21 months. But the expansion in new work was more muted amongst service providers.