Survey of trends in small and medium-sized manufacturing firms for the three months to October 2010, showing more moderate rises in orders and output than in the previous quarter, when inventory restocking had provided a boost to production growth. But output and orders are expected to see faster growth next quarter, driven by a firmer increase in domestic orders. Headcount rose in this quarter for the first time since July 2008, with medium-sized firms hiring at the fastest rate on record. Furthermore, investment intentions have strengthened; in particular, plans for spending on plant and machinery are the most positive since January 1997. But average unit costs continued to rise sharply with growth outstripping that in domestic prices, which remained broadly flat.