The latest British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) Monthly Business Survey, published today (Friday), reveals the continued threat to the UK labour market, with one in two firms considering or certain to make redundancies over the next 6 months. 

The results from 450 companies across the UK also confirm that demand remains low, with not a single business reporting that they will increase stock holdings over the next three months. 

 The key findings from the survey include: 

51% of companies are considering or certain to make redundancies over the coming 6 months.    

 None of the businesses surveyed plan to increase stock holdings.

83% will maintain stock at their current levels, while 17% will decrease stock in the next 3 months.  

1 in 5 businesses see growth returning to the UK economy by the end of 2009, while 1 in 2 are more uncertain and do not see growth returning until the first half of 2010.


 “With half of firms still thinking about cutting their workforce by the end of the year, the government must continue to promote measures that stimulate growth in investment and jobs. 

“It will be business that drives an economic recovery, boosting employment along the way. Policies to help businesses retain jobs, and increase employment, will be critical over the next 12 months. Scrapping plans to raise National Insurance contributions in 2011 is an obvious place to start.”