Business activity in the UK's services sectors continued to expand in July, increasing the pace from the previous month, but the latest survey of Britain's supply executives revealed a rather subdued outlook.
Similar muted sentiment was expressed in a survey of purchasing managers in the construction industry on Wednesday as business activity slowed in the building industry.
Manufacturing remained a bright spot in the outlook for the UK economy in the second half of the year as activity among the country's producers accelerated in July.
Overall, then, a mixed picture emerged: an economy that appears to be stuck in the limbo between expansion and downturn.
Nothing typifies this better than the contrast between consumer price inflation (CPI) running at an annual pace of 2.6%, and annual average wage growth at 1.8%.
But let's get back to this week's purchasing managers' indexes (PMI).
The services sector
The headline index rose to 53.8 in July from 53.4 in June, remaining above the 50 level that indicates expanding activity for the twelfth-consecutive month.
This rise largely reflected a boost in job creation, which edged up to its strongest level in a year and a half.
Survey respondents said rising economic uncertainty and fragile confidence among clients appeared to be putting the brakes on growth.
The construction sector
Construction PMI fell to 51.9 in July, from 54.8 in June, falling a long way short of an estimated 54.5 reading.
IHS Markit's survey revealed a reduction of new business for the first time in 11 months, with lower levels of activity in commercial development and a softer expansion in house building.
Respondents noted delays in decision making by clients worried about the economic outlook and other uncertainties linked to political instability and Brexit.
The manufacturing sector
Tuesday's manufacturing PMI for July rose to 55.1 from 54.2 in the previous month, beating an expected rise to 54.3.
New work inflows and increases in production illustrated the contrast between manufacturing and the services and construction sectors. However, this was the first time activity had accelerated in three months.
What has led us here?
Having taken a plunge in the immediate aftermath of last summer's EU referendum, the pound has still not recovered – remaining nearly 9% lower against the dollar and 12% lower versus the euro.