daily update from John Bridge OBE DL, Chief Executive

Brexit challenge

As UK/EU talks continue, businesses need both sides to knuckle down and agree a deal.

It is quite unacceptable at this difficult time that companies will have to spend cash they don’t have preparing for a ‘no deal’ scenario yet again, just as they try to cope with the impact of the worst economic crisis in living memory.
Companies will be pleased to see the government adopting a pragmatic approach to customs procedures at the border. Many trading businesses were shocked when the government insisted that it would be imposing full checks and bureaucracy from day one – deal or no deal – and they will welcome this more practical and sensible approach. 

However, while welcoming further grant funding for Customs officers, businesses still need detailed answers on a wide range of questions if they are to plan for change. That need is only intensifying as the end of the transition period comes into sight.

Labour market overview: June 2020

Indicators for May 2020 suggest that the number of employees in the UK on payrolls is down over 600,000 compared with March 2020.

Labour Force Survey (LFS) data, covering the period up to end of April 2020, show weakening employment rates, with the self-employed and men seeing some reduction in employment. The largest changes are seen in the number of people temporarily away from work, including furloughed workers, which rose by six million at the end of March into April, leading to a large fall in hours worked.

Meanwhile, the number of vacancies in May has fallen to a record low.

There is also a record quarterly decrease for self-employed workers with February to April 2020 showing a significant fall in the number of self-employed (down 131,000).

You can access the full report here

Impact of the coronavirus on spending

Detailed statistics released last week highlight that more than one-fifth of usual household spending has not been possible during the lockdown. See the analysis here .


Contact the Chamber

01223 237414 •
Cambridgeshire Chamber of Commerce

Clifford House • 2 Station Yard • Oakington • CB24 9ZR • United Kingdom