New setback for business hopes

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Business confidence has suffered a set-back in the Sheffield City Region, according to the British Chambers of Commerce’s latest Quarterly Economic Survey.

Sheffield Chamber of Commerce says UK and export sales and orders have weakened in both the manufacturing and service sectors.

Investment and cash flow remain difficult says the Chamber, with firms less likely to invest because of the uncertainty over Greek debt and other Eurozone problems, including concern over some banks.

Despite this, employment prospects have improved and the Chamber is keen to emphasise that the Survey points to a dip, rather than a new recession.

Sheffield Chamber acting executive director, Richard Wright, said: “The results of the survey are concerning and disappointing news for the region, but not entirely surprising.

“There are positive signs in terms of profitability and turnover, but these are not as strong as they need to be.

“The economic recovery will remain slow, but we are confident that we will avoid a further recession, albeit the survey shows how sensitive we are to traditional markets.

“Markets in less traditional areas like the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) are doing much better and we must continue to focus on growing trade in those areas.”