Coalition resolute but CBI survey shows sales down
As the Coalition Government continues to impose its stringent budget cuts across the board, it remains confident that the UK’s deficit should be wiped out by 2015 and that the economy will finally be showing steady recovery.
The recent political party conferences have been dominated by gloom about the economy and calls to loosen controls on capital spending. However Nick Clegg says he remains committed.
Speaking last week, he said: "It is clearer now than ever that deficit reduction was essential to protect the economy, to protect homes and jobs. Deficit reduction lays the foundations for growth. There are no shortcuts, but we won't flinch."
There have been apologies too.
Shadow chancellor Ed Balls apologised earlier this week for the lack of regulation by Labour when it was in office which was a contributory factor in the banking crisis happening.
His party has pledged to announce a five-point plan to stimulate growth and jobs at its party conference.
The Coalition however seemingly refuses to be swayed from its cuts programme, but are the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats right in their actions?
Retail in particular, which is after all one of the most visible of barometers of consumer confidence and therefore the economy as a whole, continues to struggle with inflation up and sales down and there are worries we are not out of the woods yet – especially as the cuts hamper rather than boost customer spending and confidence.
Figures released by the CBI this week as part of its Distributive Trades Survey showed overall sales volumes down by 15 per cent in September compared to the same time a year ago.
In furniture and carpets, a whopping 59 per cent of retailers reported declines in volumes compared to last year.
There may not be any shortcuts to recovery but it’s also still not clear whether the Coalition Government has taken the right route or whether it will get lost on the way.