Business sentiment in the United Kingdom improved somewhat in May, with the exception of consumer-facing enterprises, which are the ones most affected by the rising cost of living, according to a study released on Tuesday.
Despite concerns about a deteriorating economy, the Lloyds Bank Business Barometer jumped to 38% in May from 33% in April, the first gain since February.
Other surveys – like the closely-watched S&P Global Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) gauge of business activity – have pointed to a sharp slowdown in the economy in May.
Some 16% of firms intend to raise pay by 4% or more in the coming year, according to a Lloyds survey.
Consumer prices rose 9.0% in annual terms in April, the biggest rise since 1982.
The survey showed the improvement in business confidence was strongest in London.