Businesses were given a large serving of economics to go with their bacon and eggs at breakfast at a recent meeting in Milton Keynes.
Organised by chartered accountants MHA MacIntyre Hudson, 70 delegates at the Mercure Parkside, in Newport Road Woughton on the Green, heard an economic analysis by Professor Joe Nellis of Cranfield School of Management (SoM).
Prof Nellis, the director of policy, strategy and performance community at the SoM, told delegates he believes while the EU is clearly moving in the wrong direction the UK is going the right way. This, he said, meant the local business climate should benefit from uncertainties in Europe resulting in an inflow of EU capital into the South East.
But he also believes Greece will default on its debts either in an orderly or disorderly way with serious implications for the banks in France, Germany and the UK. But if the current Eurozone situation is resolved it will do much for corporate spending decisions, Currently big UK companes are sitting on huge cash reserves but lack the confidence to invest.
Prof Nellis predicted there would be a gradual upturn in the next year but a “sustained” recovery will still be a struggle. Confidence in the financial sector needs more time to rebuild because, as he put it, our “animal spirit” is still fragile.
Finally he told delegates that despite the glimmer of light in our current difficulties, there is still a long way to go – 2012 has been flat, 2013 looks optimistic but 2014 is the start of a positive trend. He added: “The recovery will be a marathon, or at least a half-marathon, but not a sprint!”
The meeting was organised by Laurence Whitehead and his colleagues at chartered accountants MHA MacIntyre Hudson, based in Silbury Boulevard,