Reasons to be cheerful
THERE are grounds for optimism on the city High Street despite the impending hike in the rate of VAT.
Responding to the emergency Budget, Paul Glossop, Barclays Corporate retail and wholesale specialist, West Anglia said: “Despite the reaction from the House, the announced rise in VAT is no surprise to retailers who have been planning for an increase and looking at cost bases and price points since January.
“The timing of an increase is what retailers were focusing on. Bringing in the change on January 4 will mean the crucial Christmas trading period is protected; it will also, hopefully, help stimulate sales between now and then as shoppers bring planned big-ticket purchases forward before the change.
“In the shorter term, a strengthening pound, the apparent onset of summer and, in Peterborough, the improvements to the city centre starting to take shape, mean that there is a reasonable degree of optimism on the High Street”.