Sales for Liverpool City Region businesses nudge ahead of national trends

Liverpool City Region businesses are bucking national trends for domestic sales, according to the latest Quarterly Economic Survey by the British Chambers of Commerce.

Data collected for the Liverpool City Region by the Chambers in Liverpool, Halton, Knowsley, St Helens and Wirral shows that the number of companies reporting increased sales to UK customers between December and February increased by 4% compared with the previous quarter, while the national trend showed a 3% decline during the same period.

Advance export sales within the manufacturing sector have also risen despite overall exports sales falling. This compares favourably to the national picture, where sales across the board have decreased.  The number of companies reporting increases in investment in new machinery, equipment and training also increased by 7% among businesses in the region.

More than 80% of local firms share the challenges of peers across the UK when it comes to recruiting staff and the impact of rising prices, with inflation noted as the greatest concern for 62% of services firms in the city region, up from 41% in the previous last quarter.

The Quarterly Economic Survey is the largest independent business survey of its kind in the UK. Nationally, British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) uses the data to lobby government and key decision makers on behalf of Chamber members.

Lesley Martin-Wright, Chief Executive of Knowsley Chamber, said: “The QES results for Liverpool City Region broadly mirror the national results, but we can see a number of indicators that are more positive than the UK picture.

“While inflation concerns are clear, they were actually lower than highlighted nationally at the time of the survey. However, we can expect those worries will only have intensified in recent weeks since the conclusion of the survey fieldwork.

“Local firms can take heart from the relatively positive picture around domestic sales and they will be keen to use this as a platform for future growth.”