The latest report by the Scottish Chambers of Commerce’s (SCC) has shown the Scottish economy slowed to a crawl and could stop completely sparking fear of another recessionary dip, says Debt Solutions Company, www.scottishtrustdeed.co.uk.
The figures for the second quarter of 2012 are giving grave cause for concern in Scotland. Experts believe these are a response to the EU debt crisis, which has caused weak consumer confidence, reduced business activity, and firms adopting a much more cautious approach to business in the third quarter.
Garry Clark, head of the Scottish Chamber, said: “The optimism evident at the beginning of 2012 is less evident now, and the signs, both internationally and at home, are of a slowdown and return to negative growth”.
“With few exceptions, demand and both consumer and business confidence remain weak and the outlook for the rest of the year is one of little or no growth. It is clear that the additional stimulus of infrastructure spending must be backed up with action to ensure that Scottish-based businesses are able to reap the maximum possible benefit from these new contracts.”
The manufacturing sector has not performed as expected, with outcomes lower than hoped and a general lack of optimism. There’s a similar story in the construction industry despite the maintenance and extension of capital spending levels in the economy.
However, while the SCC is gloomy in its outlook, others think that the future is looking a lot brighter for Scotland, particularly concerning employment. PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) estimate that Scotland will see a fall in employment levels over the next couple of years. PwC regional leader, Lindsay Gardiner, said: “A hub for oil and gas, financial services and engineering sectors, there are numerous stand-out examples of successful companies that are achieving good growth.”
The Scottish Government is in agreement, and claims Scotland has an excellent track record of investing money in creating jobs – one of the best in the UK – according to an independent study it commissioned by Ernst and Young.
Fergus Ewing, Enterprise Minister, said: “In Scotland, we announced last month that we are bringing forward a £105m package of economic stimulus to maximise opportunities and we continue to urge Westminster to follow our lead and invest now to promote economic growth in future.”
A spokesperson for Trust Deed Scotland Company, www.scottishtrustdeed.co.uk said: “This is a blow for the Scottish people, who have been looking forward to seeing the effects of economic growth reflected in new jobs and opportunities. It’s great to see the government pledging funds to try and revitalize the economy, but it may take a considerable amount more than £105m to shift Scotland from stagnation into growth.”
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