Wednesday 21 August 2013

Giving the Economy a Boost: Andy Murray, the Ashes, a Heat Wave and the Royal Baby

by Richard Hogg

I stumbled across something quite odd on the BBC last week: three positive stories about the UK economy...

So what’s behind all of this good news? More people are out spending money – because of what economists call the “feel good” factor: the heat wave, sport - Andy Murray's Wimbledon win, Chris Froome's Tour de France success, The Lion's victory - to name but a few, the Royal baby, etc.

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) just announced that like-for-like retail sales increased 2.2 per cent in July, which marks the third consecutive month of growth for high street sales and the fastest growth during the month of July since 2006. It appears we’re also drinking and eating much more. According to the BRC, last month’s food and drink sales were the highest in almost four years.

These are welcomed improvements for local shop owners throughout the UK and for the economists who are also excited about:

· Growth in the services sector (the fastest we’ve seen since 2006)

· Improved house prices

· Expanding manufacturing output

Too often, we only hear reports about one of these indicators doing well. However, the flurry of good news, in my opinion, is the first true sign that the rest of 2013 and 2014 will be better for us.

For procurement teams in the public and private sectors, signs of an improving economy should encourage you to reassess your processes, technologies and systems in advance of (hopefully) more requests from your organisation.

Now, shall we all go to the pub and watch the Ashes later? All in the name of boosting the economy, of course… After all, that doesn’t sound like a terrible idea.

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