A major economic survey has shown that the second wave of coronavirus, and the new lockdown restrictions that have come with it, has hit regional economies across the UK.
According to Business Live, employment has fallen for the eighth month in a row across all parts of the UK, with the steepest decline in payroll numbers being in the West Midlands.
Due to the new, strict restrictions, activity has fallen in Wales and Scotland. In some regions of England, business activity has risen, however at much slower rates.
Eight out of nine English regions showed some growth, although slower than seen in previous months. The South West was the only English region to see output fall.
NatWest’s chief economist, Sebastian Burnside, said, “There was a clear downswing in momentum across all regional economies in October, as rising coronavirus cases led to new restrictions on activity and increased uncertainty.
“Tougher rules in Scotland in October and a ‘firebreak’ in Wales led to marked decreases in business activity during the month, and we can expect similar patterns across England in November as the new lockdown restrictions come into effect.
“A drop in expectations across most regions shows that businesses are anticipating a tough end to the year, yet still they remain strongly confident of being able to turn things around once the worst of the pandemic has passed.
“For now, many businesses are in survival mode, which has unfortunately meant further job cuts. The extension of the furlough scheme and other measures announced by the Government will be critical to limiting the impact through winter.”
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