Optimism has trebled among UK industry experts since general election
Optimism has soared in the UK following December’s general election, signalling greater clarity and confidence among industry experts. In the latest quarterly Global Economic Score from global insights platform Atheneum, and online statistics portal Statista, 1,192 industry experts worldwide have recorded their views on the economic climate, investment, employment rate, consumer demand, political stability, international trade, and the strength of the local currency.
Of all countries surveyed, the UK has seen the largest positive shift in overall outlook, a sharp turnaround after being the most pessimistic in Q3 2019’s report.
Collected in the two weeks following the general election, the latest UK data reveals a 15% increase in satisfaction with the current economic climate (up to 35%) and a 12% decrease in dissatisfaction (down to 44%) compared to Q3 2019. Spain has taken over as the most pessimistic, with 41% of experts expecting the economic situation to decline, 15% more than the previous quarter.
Ammad Ahmad, co-founder and COO of Atheneum, said: “Brexit uncertainty has been a key cause for concern for UK industry experts over the last few years, but we can see from this report that perceptions are shifting in recent weeks, and a glimmer of optimism has at least returned for many of the UK experts in our network. Many industries have put contingency plans in place and have sought out external support to prepare for Brexit during periods of uncertainty.”
Q4’s report showed a major shift in outlook for the UK’s expected development. From only 13% expecting improvement and a whopping 69% expecting it to deteriorate in the previous quarter, latest figures show 44% now expect development to improve and 39% expect it to deteriorate.
One of the greatest changes among business experts has been their predictions of employment rates. Over one in five (21%) industry experts now expect employment rates to improve, an increase of 13% from the previous quarter. Although fewer experts expect employment rate to deteriorate (down to 32% from 51%), there are still concerns for industries in the UK, as Neville Moon, independent food consultant, explains:
“Industry leaders are pleased that the period of uncertainty has ended but serious doubts remain over the cost of labour and the closing of important markets for the food industry both in terms of exports to Europe and imports of ingredients into the UK from Europe.
“Much of our industry relies on hard-working and skilled employees from Eastern European countries and we are already seeing a significant drop in numbers of these essential workers settling in the UK. Although the Pound has strengthened since the election, the Euro remains high and workers who previously looked to the UK are now attracted to the stronger Euro and better employment prospects in countries such as the Nordics and Germany.”
Atheneum is Europe’s leading Global Insights Platform, offering Research as a Service to provide a gateway to reliable industry knowledge, sought after by renowned investment firms, leading global corporations and well-known professional service firms. The Global Economic Outlook Score is a unique indicator of current and future economic sentiment, utilising Atheneum’s network of leading experts from 23 countries and several industries including healthcare, food, energy, banking, construction and tourism.