29 Jan EAST OF ENGLAND BUSINESS CONFIDENCE DIPS BUT VACCINE DRIVES HOPE FOR 2021
Business confidence in the East of England fell 11 points during January to -12% according to the latest Business Barometer from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.
Companies in the East of England reported lower confidence in their own business prospects month-on-month, down 22 points to -10%. When taken alongside their views of the economy, down one point on December to -14%, this gives a headline confidence reading of -12%.
The Business Barometer questions 1,200 businesses monthly and provides early signals about UK economic trends both regionally and nationwide.
Almost two thirds (61%) of firms said current Covid-19 restrictions had caused a fall in turnover but they expected the effects of the vaccine programme to boost trading prospects for 2021, with 48% saying the rollout had made them feel more confident about the year ahead. However, only 14% expect trading levels to return to pre-pandemic levels in the next twelve months.
When it comes to jobs, a net balance of 10% of businesses in the region expect to reduce staff levels over the next year, up 10 points on last month.