A recent survey by the Ulster Bank has revealed that business activity in Northern Ireland picked up last month, which hopefully shows that the economy is slowly recovering after lockdown. But worryingly there has been a steep rise in unemployment which will have to be checked if we are to see a sustained recovery.
Retail, Manufacturing & Construction Picking Up
The survey showed that output and new orders were increasing at a healthy rate after the heavy falls during March onwards, with retail, manufacturing and construction showing strong performances. However the biggest sector in the Northern Ireland economy, the services industry, has continued to stagnate.
Mixed Sales Performances
There has been mixed results for many companies, with some seeing decent sales performances and others finding it hard to get back to a competitive level in their sector.
If you compare the economic results so far with the rest of the UK, Northern Ireland has fared better than both Scotland and Wales but has not done as well as England.
Commenting on the economic climate in Northern Ireland, Ulster Bank chief economist Richard Ramsey is quoted in a BBC News article as saying:
“A further easing of lockdown restrictions in July helped secure growth in private sector activity for the first time in 17 months,” he said.
But he warned there will be further job losses ahead.
“The phasing out of the furlough scheme is anticipated to lead to further redundancies in the months ahead,” he said.
“While the return to growth is welcome news it merely marks the start of a long road to recovery. There remains a huge gap relative to pre-pandemic levels of output/activity.
“Bridging this gap will take years not months and the twin challenges of Covid-19 and Brexit will have to be navigated along the way.”
Partnering With WHR Accountants
There are bound to be many bumps in the road as the economy and society as a whole recovers from the effects of Covid-19. And if the infection rates rise as communities open up further and schools re-open we could be in for a very rough ride indeed. But let`s think positively and hope that we are over the worst of it.
If you have a business and you want a dedicated, professional accountancy firm that you can partner with to help you through the next few weeks, months and years we are here to help you.
The first thing to do is contact us so we can have an informal chat about your business and see what areas we can help you with. So if you can give our offices a call on 028 3752 2909 we would be very pleased to discuss the options available and give you an indication of how we can help your business survive, thrive and grow.