Monthly Decision Maker Panel data - July 2022

The Decision Maker Panel (DMP) is a survey of Chief Financial Officers from small, medium and large UK businesses. We use it to monitor developments in the economy and to track businesses’ views.
Published on 04 August 2022

The July DMP survey was conducted between 8 and 22 July and received 2,497 responses.

Annual private sector output price inflation in the DMP was 7.6% in the three months to July, 0.5 percentage points higher than in the three months to June. The single month figure for July was 7.9%, up from 7.5% in June.  Expected year-ahead annual output price inflation was 6.3% in the three months to July, up from 6.1% the previous month (the single month data was 6.6%, 0.3 percentage points higher than in June). 

Over the 12 months to July, average unit costs were estimated to have increased by 9.6%. Over the next 12 months, firms expected unit cost growth to be 8.2%, on average. Average wage growth was reported to have been 5.5% over the 12 months to July, and was expected to be 5.2% over the next 12 months. 

Perceptions of current CPI inflation averaged 9.2% in the July survey, broadly in line with the official ONS CPI inflation rate, which increased from 9.1% to 9.4% on 20 July. Looking ahead, DMP members expected CPI inflation to be 7.3% one-year ahead and 4.1% in three years’ time.

The percentage of non-labour inputs being disrupted fell to 14% in July, from 16% in June. 

Recruitment difficulties remained widespread. In July, 87% of firms reported they were finding it harder to recruit new employees compared with normal. Of those, 60% reported that it was ‘much harder’, 6 percentage points lower than in June. 

Employment growth over the 12 months to July was 4.7%, unchanged from the figure for June. Over the next 12 months, firms expect employment to increase by 1.8%, down from 2.4% in June and 3.7% in March.

The level of overall business uncertainty edged up in July. 62% of respondents reported that uncertainty for their business was ‘high’ or ‘very high’ at the moment, 4 percentage points higher than in June. Uncertainty relating specifically to the conflict in Ukraine and to Brexit eased in July, with the percentage of respondents ranking each as a top-three source of uncertainty down 2 percentage points and 5 percentage points respectively. Uncertainty relating to Covid increased slightly in July, with 23% of respondents citing it as a top three source of uncertainty, up from 18% in June.

The DMP was set up in August 2016 by the Bank of England together with academics from Stanford University and the University of Nottingham. It was designed to be representative of the population of UK businesses. All results are weighted. See Bloom et al (2017) for more details.

The DMP receives funding from the Economic and Social Research Council.