UK tourism outpacing global recovery, study finds

UK tourism is reportedly “outperforming” its international counterparts on a series of metrics that tracks recovery from the pandemic, according to Lloyds Bank. 

The Lloyds Bank UK Recovery Tracker, alongside IHS Markit, provides insight into the shape and pace of the UK’s recovery following the “unprecedented disruption” caused by Covid-19

The output of UK businesses in 13 of the 14 sectors monitored by the Tracker increased in August, up from 12 sectors in July, as tourism returned to growth for the first time since February.

 The sector, which includes hotels, restaurants and leisure facilities, posted a PMI reading of 60 in August, up from 45 in July. 

According to Lloyds, a reading of above 50 signals output is rising, while a reading below 50 indicates output is falling. 

It added that businesses focusing on domestic tourism reported a benefit from an increase in people taking staycations.

Tourism and recreation joined automobiles and auto parts (77) and healthcare (71) as the sectors furthest ahead of global benchmarks during August. 

Lloyds Bank said: “While the vast majority of UK sectors outperformed their international counterparts in August, this should be viewed in the context of the historic lows recorded during the second quarter of 2020.” 

Jeavon Lolay, head of economics and market insight, Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “The headline findings of this month’s UK Recovery Tracker paint a positive picture, with more domestic businesses outperforming their international counterparts during August. 

“However, despite most UK sectors being ahead of the global benchmark, the data shows the recovery of some industries is starting to slow.” 

He added: “When it comes to the UK’s performance, it’s worth noting that other European countries have already experienced a slowdown in their performance as they navigate further outbreaks of Covid-19 and additional measures to stop the pandemic’s spread. 

“It will be interesting to see the picture in September when the Eat Out to Help Out scheme has ended and the impact of the ‘rule of six’ on sectors that rely on social interaction, such as tourism and recreation, is clearer.” 

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