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Business confidence stays weak on Brexit stalemate

Confidence levels among British businesses remain weak as talk to break the Brexit deadlock continue.

Latest survey data also indicates that stockpiling could have inflated economic growth figures ahead of Britain’s departure from the EU as businesses take early precautions.

The Times quotes the latest corporate confidence reading from the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales as -16.6 in the quarter to April.

The previous quarter’s results came in at -16.4, where a zero would suggest a completely neutral view of economic prospects.

The ICAEW’s chief executive Michael Izza is quoted by the paper as saying: “Businesses I speak to say that there is no sense that things will change much in the next few months”.

The Conservative and Labour parties are currently locked in secret talks in a bid to get a Brexit deal through parliament.

Conservative leader and prime minister Theresa May is set to meet the head of the party’s 1922 committee Sir Graham Brady as pressure has grown on her to formalise a date for her departure after agreeing to stand down in March if and when Parliament ratified her Brexit withdrawal agreement.

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