POLL: Most people think economy is heading in the right direction, Derby Telegraph poll suggests
THE majority of Derby Telegraph readers believe the economy is on the up, according to the results of an online poll.
Out of 2,104 votes cast by readers of the newspaper's website, thisisderbyshire. co.uk, 1,224 people, or 58%, believed things were heading in the right direction.
The remaining 880 people, or 42%, disagreed.
The poll was prompted after Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce earlier this month revealed there was a feeling of "confidence" among local businesses that the economy had finally turned the corner This came on the back of reports which showed that new car sales, retail spending and house prices were all on the rise.
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Yesterday, there was further good news for the housing market, following the publication of a survey by agents Rightmove showing that the average house price had risen by 1.7% since last month to £239,710. This followed a 2.8% rise in February. The previous highest level for March was at the peak of the property market in 2008, when the average price was £239,655.
The results come as the Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne prepares to deliver his Budget tomorrow.
Miles Shipside, Rightmove director and housing market analyst, said there was an opportunity for the Government to build on the momentum in the housing market. He said: "A housing market-led, confidence-boosting Budget could help the economy change up a gear.
"More houses need to be built to meet growing household numbers and the activity it creates is a great boost to the economy."
Meanwhile, a tax expert at Castle Donington firm of accountants and business advisers PwC says Derbyshire firms will be hoping the Chancellor announces some short-term measures that can help kick-start the economy.
Richard Farnsworth said a rise in public borrowing, combined with disappointing economic growth forecasts, meant the Government had little room for manoeuvre. But he believed Mr Osborne could boost the economy without spending too much.
He said: "The Chancellor may look to bring in some innovative ideas that allow businesses to feel more confident about investing in creating jobs or expanding into new export markets.
"The Chancellor could well look at some clever ways to stimulate the economy, by introducing some short-term or temporary fiscal incentives."