Consumer confidence held steady in August, remaining at -27 during the month
The UK is reportedly on track for a record economic resurgence during the third quarter of the year, following sharp declines in GDP at the peak of the Covid-19 pandemic in Q2.
According to the Financial Times (FT), City of London economists have predicted a 14.3% rise in GDP for Q3, which could see the UK rise to the top G7 performance table during the quarter.
This is supported by new research from consultancy firm Fable Data, which shows a surge in spending during the first two weeks of August; a marked improvement on the same period last year, the FT reports.
As such, the UK experienced its first annual growth in spending since it went into lockdown at the tail end of March.
July retail sales also saw a return to growth, as volumes increased by 3.6% when compared with June, according to the ONS. The figure is also 3% above pre-pandemic levels in February 2020.
In the restaurant sector, the second week of the Eat Out to Help Out (EOTHO) initiative saw a 30% increase in sales compared with the week before the scheme started, according to research from Fourth.
The spike in consumer demand led to an increase in the hours worked by employees in the industry, as the total hours scheduled between Monday-Wednesday of the opening week jumped 17% from the previous week – with pubs accounting for a 13% increase, restaurants 33%, and QSR 15%.
Further to this, it was announced that scores from the Barclaycard Payments’ SME Barometer jumped from 79 out of a possible 200 points at the start of Q2, to 95 points at the start of Q3…