Gaps in regional business growth are widening


London showed strong private sector business growth in July, according to Lloyds TSB's latest regional purchasing managers' survey, but the figures also revealed a widening divergence within the UK.

Despite the performance in the capital, which showed its sharpest expansion since March 2009, the output in the North-west and the South-west showed only marginal growth.

The report added that the gap between the fastest and the slowest-growing English regions was at the widest it had been for more than two years.

John Maltby, head of Lloyds TSB Commercial, said: "July's survey data points to an uneven regional recovery," before adding: "Widening growth disparities reflect the differing exposure of the English regions to high-growth export markets, alongside varying sensitivity to Government spending patterns and muted domestic consumer spending."