The current global economic climate - with on-going instability in China, the question of a Brexit hanging over Europe and the first interest rate hike in the US in a decade - was an interesting backdrop for the launch of London Chamber of Commerce and Industry's (LCCI) Q4 2015 results of its London Quarterly Economic Survey with Capital 500. ComRes surveyed 511 London business leaders between 2 and 19 November last year.
The headlines of London's Q4 performance:
- Domestic demand is going up and continues to underpin the strong performance of London businesses;
- There has been a 10% increase in employment;
- Almost one in six businesses looked to hire in this quarter, a slight increase on Q3;
- There was a significant increase in cashflow levels, with 24% of the Capital 500 companies reporting an increase;
- Business confidence is still strong, with 33% expecting their companies' prospects to improve over the next 12 months.
Commenting on these results at the LCCI event was Andrew Hawkins, Chairman, ComRes; Miles Gibson, Head of UK Research, CBRE Ltd; Vicky Pryce, Chief Economic Adviser, CEBR; and Colin Stanbridge, Chief Executive, London Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Andrew Hawkins said the overall picture is that the economy is doing well. He highlighted that employment is being driven by larger firms, which are optimistic and whilst they are investing the most, they also have the greatest concerns about competition. He stressed that there are "different outlooks for different sized businesses", and that in terms of sector, the construction industry is especially buoyant.
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