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UK business confidence increases in October, says Lloyds

Staff Writer |
Business morale in Britain rose in October to the highest level since April, according to a bank survey.

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The Lloyds business barometer index climbed to 37% in October from 24% in September, a post EU referendum high.

Hann-Ju Ho, senior economist at Lloyds bank commercial banking, said: "Our October survey shows a rise in overall confidence and suggests that the economy is on track to grow at a moderate pace in fourth quarter.

"Overall confidence reached its highest level since April driven by significant improvements in both business prospects and economic optimism."

About 39% of businesses, up from 22% the previous month, said they expected their business prospects to improve over the coming year.

There was an increase in positive prospects to 46% from 37% and also a fall in negative prospects to 7% from 15%.

This was similar for economic optimism, which was up to 34% from 26%, the highest since March, due to a decrease in responses that were negative about economic prospects to 13% from 23%.

The share of businesses which expected an improvement in wider economic prospects fell to 47% from 49%.

The increase in overall confidence was reflected in a rise in sentiment to 46% from 14%.

The report comes after positive data released on Thursday by the Office for National Statistics, which showed third quarter gross domestic product grew by 0.5%, ahead of the 0.1% expected by the Bank of England in August.

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