Agents' Summary of Business Conditions - July 2014

We regularly publish a summary of reports compiled by our twelve regional Agents following discussions with at least 700 businesses across the UK every reporting period.
Published on 23 July 2014
  • Retail sales and consumer services values had continued to grow at a steady rate.
  • Activity in the housing market had eased, reflecting the effect of the implementation of the Mortgage Market Review and a shortage of properties for sale.
  • Contacts’ capital expenditure plans suggested steady growth in investment over the next twelve months.
  • Business services turnover growth had been little changed.
  • Growth in manufacturing output for the domestic market had increased slightly. Manufacturing export values had continued to grow at a moderate rate, although sterling’s appreciation had negatively affected export margins.
  • Construction output had continued to grow strongly, with growth widening out beyond house building.
  • Corporate credit conditions had continued to improve, with few reports of companies not being able to access finance.
  • Employment intentions had risen, pointing to moderate growth in the next six months. Recruitment difficulties had increased further, remaining modestly above normal levels.
  • Capacity utilisation had been little changed, remaining marginally above normal.
  • Growth in total labour costs per employee had remained moderate.
  • Materials costs and imported finished goods prices were both lower than a year earlier, partly reflecting the effects of sterling’s appreciation.
  • Output prices had increased only modestly, despite rising demand. Manufacturing and services profitability had risen further.
  • Consumer price inflation had remained subdued.

PDFAgents' Summary of Business Conditions - July 2014

This page was last updated 31 January 2023