Sixty per cent of respondents to the Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce quarterly economic survey felt their UK sales had increased between April and June 2015 and a further 60 per cent said UK orders had increased.
An increase in export sales was reported by 79 per cent of businesses to the survey and 66 per cent of respondents said their workforce had increased over the last three months.
The findings are based on 170 responses from businesses across Staffordshire to the Chamber of Commerce’s Quarter 2 economic survey.
Jane Gratton, Deputy Chief Executive for Staffordshire Chambers of Commerce, said: “Overall these are an encouraging set of results and very good news for the local economy. Business activity is buoyant and demonstrates strong growth.
“Our local manufacturing sector has performed strongly with UK sales, orders and export activity rising. There is also a clear increase in job creation and additional recruitment is planned for the next quarter.”
She added: “This is the first set of results following the General Election and firms are reacting confidently to a stable economic environment. There appears to be upward pressure from wage settlements. The recent announcement in the budget on the Living Wage is likely to impact significantly on wage bills for small firms particularly in the retail and leisure sectors.”
• 60 per cent of businesses report an increase in UK sales (up four per cent on last quarter) and orders (up five per cent on last quarter)
• Exports sales have increased from 55 per cent in Q1 to 79 per cent.
• 66 per cent of respondents said they had increased their workforce in the last three months and 65 per cent said their workforce would increase over the next three months.
• 76 per cent expected turnover to improve over the next 12 months with 38 per cent expecting profitability to improve over the same period.
• The top three external factors affecting respondents’ businesses were cited as energy/fuel costs (46 per cent), cash availability (43 per cent) and competition (29 per cent).
• When asked about the European Union, 60 per cent of respondents favoured remaining in the EU with powers returned to Westminster.
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Article Source: http://staffordshirechambers.co.uk/latest/news/confidence-high-in-staffordshires-business-community-quarterly-survey-reveals/