A closely-watched gauge of business activity has pointed to a levelling off following the coronavirus slump but a continuing surge in unemployment.
A day before the re-opening of the hospitality sector in England, the IHS Markit/CIPS UK Services Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) for June showed a third of businesses in the powerhouse sector reporting a drop in output.
That was an improvement on 54% the previous month as lockdown restrictions started to ease from the hibernation forced on firms since March.
The PMI survey showed 28% of respondents reporting a pick-up in activity.
The figures cover the final month of the second quarter of the year, which is on course to deliver the sharpest recession witnessed for around 300 years.
The Bank of England last month forecast a 20% slump in gross domestic product (GDP) over the first six months of 2020.