Millennium holiday to cost £5bn

It said on Monday there was also evidence of a ‘domino effect’ with many businesses electing to stay shut betweenChristmas and New Year because suppliers will be closed anyway.

The business group said that despite the loss, businesses were doing the right thing by their employees.

‘This year’s shut-down will mark a well-earned rest and chance to celebrate a once-in-a- lifetime event,’ it said. ‘Wherever appropriate, the best thing employerscan do this year is to give their staff a decent rest.’

But London’s financial district, the City, will still be buzzing with activity over the holidays.

The Chamber of Commerce said an estimated 30,000 workers were expected to come into the City to deal with any problems arising from the so-called MillenniumBug.

Related reading