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Confidence in UK economy turns positive


Optimism about the UK’s economy is higher than at any time since Theresa May triggered Article 50 last March, according to a survey of company directors.

The rise in confidence follows an earlier jump after December’s announcement that sufficient progress had been made in the first phase of the Brexit talks.

The UK’s uncertain trading status with the EU has fallen out of the top three concerns of business leaders for the first time since withdrawal negotiations began, the Institute of Directors found.

Economic conditions, skills shortages and compliance with government regulation now occupy the top spots.

A net balance of 1 per cent more of those asked thought the prospects for the economy were good, while the balance was 47 per cent when bosses were asked about the outlook for their own company.

Tej Parikh, senior economist at the Institute of Directors, said: “After nearly a year of economic pessimism winning out among business leaders, the scales have tipped gently into the positive.

“It seems likely that meaningful progress in Brexit negotiations since December has brought some much needed reassurance.

“The sensitivity of business leaders to their political environment highlights the imperative for clear communications from policymakers.

“The wrong signals or lack of engagement can have a real impact on firms’ investment and employment plans.”

Source: The Independent