Confidence will drive the recovery

According to official data, we are now out of recession. Personally, I don’t know whether to celebrate or not, as I really can’t believe it went on for 18 months. My, how time flies.

We have been in recession for the longest period since quarterly figures were first recorded in 1955 and we are one of the last major economies to come out of the worldwide recession - but only on growth of 0.1%.

This figure is based upon only half the data so far available so, in theory, when the full data is there we could actually see more of an increase in growth. Be warned though, this figure could also be downgraded, meaning we never left the recession anyhow.

Many economists fear that this could be the case once the full data is available, but my view is more upbeat because everyone I speak to in the commercial industry seems to be getting really busy.

A few days ago I made enquiries about further developments to my website but my web-support team said I would have to wait a few weeks because firms that had put jobs on hold last year were now hitting the ‘go’ button.

Meanwhile, when I ordered a new shower door last weekend, I asked the sales department how business was doing. Apparently, it really kicked off for this firm back in November and has been manic since the start of the year.

I also have a friend who is high up in Ford who tells me they can‘t make the Ford Focus quick enough to meet demand.

The other place I decided to enquire was down at my local, The Chapel in Coggeshall, Essex. All in the line of duty, I sampled some bitter and spoke to the landlord who informed me that he was enjoying a good, steady flow of business.

We can all be armchair economists but what I would like to see is all the political parties united in getting things moving for the good of the country instead of listening to their predictable sniping at each other.

I watched George Osborne and Vince Cable on the BBC and I could have written their speeches for them. Each one blamed the other party, as well as the government, in order to point score on primetime TV

My only concern is for those individuals burdened with debts, who will not see any benefit from the upturn. Debt levels will stay the same irrespective of the recession, with interest rates probably rising towards the end of the year to combat inflation.

At the moment, the average interest rate for a credit card is 36 times the current base rate (0.5%). So if we go to 1% we will soon be back to the good old days of a credit card at 36%.

Most households have been squeezed financially over the past two years, and this could take many months - if not years - to improve.

My marker for getting out of recession and onto a sound recovery is the three ‘Cs’: cash, credit and confidence.

Cash is linked to credit - get more credit in the economy and the cash comes.

Then, once people gain more confidence in their job security they will have the confidence to buy goods and services and use leisure facilities… and away we go.