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Survey shows UK economy on the move

The CBI monthly retail survey shows that UK retailers saw sales increase at their fastest rate for three years in July. Interestingly, despite the fact that UK budget cuts are set to hit home in the short to medium term, retailers are also at their most positive for six years with a balance of +33 reported by the survey against -5 in June. So how does this fit with analyst forecasts?

The vast majority of analysts had expected a zero reading from the CBI survey for July which would effectively mean that the number of upbeat retailers and the number of downbeat retailers was the same. However, the figure has astounded many in the retail industry and is actually three times better than retailers themselves had expected. As a consequence of this survey, and the surprisingly upbeat nature, the UK currency is stronger today on the exchange rate markets although how long this trend will last remains to be seen.

The UK government will welcome this particularly upbeat statement with regards to the UK retail sector which does form a large part of the UK economy. However, as MPs are only too keen to inform us, the vast majority of pain for the UK economy is yet to hit home.

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