The Hindu Business Line
British companies absorbing Brexit shock
Richard Bunce says he felt sick when voters decided to take Britain out of the EU, forcing him into a emergency review of his firm’s expansion plans.
But six months on, orders are strong and a new growth plan is in place, according to Bunce, Managing Director of Mec Com Ltd, which sells devices to protect against power surges, to clients such as Siemens and Alstom.
Far from the “profound and immediate economic shock” predicted by Britain’s finance ministry, the economy has, so far, barely slowed.
Bunce expects tougher times. But like many other executives trying to push their Brexit worries to one side, he invested nearly half a million pounds on a new laser-cutting over the would need to find a way to switch very quickly, but as things stand we are planning for more UK business,” he said.
Many other companies seem to be taking a similar approach,including technology giants Facebook and Google which have announced plans to create jobs in Britain in recent weeks.
According to official data, businesses increased investment in the three months after the referendum.
Manufacturing body EEF says the sector is its most upbeat in a year and a half, helped by an export-boosting fall in the pound since the vote, and investment and hiring plans are up.
In construction, office building has slowed but some companies plan to ramp up home-building next year. A survey by IHS Markit showed growth in the construction sector hit an eightmonth high in November.
Economists do a revision
Economists are now raising their predictions for British economic growth next year, after many of them initially warned June’s vote would quickly cause a recession.
The Bank of England in November made its biggest ever growth upgrade, saying the economy would grow by 1.4 per cent in 2017, up from a forecast of 0.8 per cent it made three months earlier.