Economy creeps back to life as staff and shoppers return
Britain’s recovery is getting under way as shoppers flock to retail parks and businesses bring back furloughed workers, writes Tim Wallace.
Furthermore, half of staff are now travelling into work again and the housing market appears to be shaking off its slumber.
Gradual reopening of different industries has started to take effect, indicators from the Office for National Statistics suggest, as battered firms get back to work.
Much of this chimes with comments from Andy Haldane, the Bank of England’s chief economist, that the economy could be seeing early signs of a rapid “V-shaped” recovery.
Retail parks now have around 70pc of their usual visitor numbers, up from a low of around 10pc at Easter.
The rebound is most likely because retail parks, with their open-air settings and larger shops, are able to let customers in while maintaining the necessary social distancing. Just under one quarter of their staff are now on furlough, down from 30pc a fortnight ago.
As the economy reopens, more staff are going back in to work – 49pc now travel to work daily, up from 36pc in late May.
Almost one fifth of businesses in accommodation and food restarted trading in the past fortnight. Another one in 10 expects to reopen in the coming two weeks after “Super Saturday” tomorrow.