Overseas demand grows for UK financial services

The UK financial services industry appears to be in a healthy state following
the publication of a report which found that strong growth in this key sector
has continued, helped by the highest level of overseas demand in almost eight

According to the latest Financial Services Survey published today by
the CBI and
PricewaterhouseCoopers, expanding incomes
helped overall profitability grow for the first time in six months, though by
less than expected. Employment growth fell back from last quarter’s record level
but remains strong, and is predicted to continue.

For the first three months of the year, 39% of respondents said business
volumes had grown, and just 4% said they had decreased – a net balance after
rounding of 34%. This was better than the 22% balance expected, and firms
predict similar growth over the coming quarter (+33%).

, CBI chief economic adviser, said: ‘These results consolidate
last quarter’s return to strong growth, in a sector that is one of the driving
forces of the UK economy. The modest recovery in profitability is encouraging,
investment plans are buoyant and firms are hiring more staff.’

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