UK services sector registered strong growth in business volumes in three months to February, the latest Services Sector survey from the Confederation of British Industry showed Monday.
Both business and professional services and consumer services logged a rise in profits for the first time since November 2015.
Business and professional services said their business volumes grew at the fastest pace since August 2015, and growth is set to accelerate further in the three months to May.
In the consumer services sector, volumes grew at the fastest pace in a year. Consumer services growth is expected to ease next quarter, but nonetheless remain firm.
Rain Newton-Smith, CBI chief economist, said "It's great to see the services sector start the year off on a firm footing."
"Despite feeling the pinch from high inflation, business volumes have bloomed, profits have grown for the first time in over two years and hiring is on the up."
Prices continued to rise in consumer services but were flat in business and professional services. Next quarter, price growth is expected to accelerate in both sub-sectors, survey showed.