The overall productivity of the local economy can be measured by the Gross Value Added (GVA) per hour worked. The graph below shows this productivity trend over recent years relative to the UK (index=100). The use of a relative index helps to control for inflation. Wakefield’s economic productivity fell between 2004 and 2009 and then started to increase again. Leeds has the highest productivity in the sub-region, but this has been declining relative to the UK as a whole. Productivity in Calderdale and Kirklees has also been falling.
Source: ONS Gross Value Added
The proportion of Wakefield’s economic output contributed by service industries (in £millions) has increased over the past 18 years. At the same time the contribution of production industries (including manufacturing) has decreased as a proportion (see graph below). A similar change has occurred across the UK economy as a whole. Construction and agriculture account for relatively small portions of economic income.
The Mid Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce Economic Survey (March 2017) shows that business confidence peaked at the end of 2013 and then fell (see graph below). At the end of Quarter 1 2017, the difference between the proportion of companies expecting an increase in profitability and those expecting a decrease (the balance) was -3%, and turnover expectations fell dramatically.