By Jonathan London on 29th June 2015

Confidence on the rise among UK small businesses

Micro-businesses and smaller companies across the UK are expecting favourable trading conditions over the coming months, according to a new industry report.

The latest Small Business Index from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has shown that confidence levels among small firms for the second quarter of 2015 was measured at +37.9, up from +28.7 in the first quarter, although slightly down from the all-time high reading of +39.7 12 months ago.

It was also revealed that 65.3 per cent of small firms aspire to grow moderately or rapidly in the next three months – the highest proportion ever recorded on this index – while 32 per cent plan to increase capital investment over the next year.

Meanwhile, data from the latest FSB Productivity Index shows that annual output per hour for workers rose by 1.4 per cent year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2014 among small firms, compared with 0.3 per cent across the UK economy as a whole.

Other key findings include the fact that a positive balance of 24.1 per cent of small firms reported increased revenues during the second quarter, while +17.4 per cent reported higher profit levels.

These findings are indicative of the positive role that entrepreneurs and small companies are having in driving the growth of the UK economy, with those in the south-east enjoying particular success.

Responding to the data, the FSB has called on David Cameron’s new Conservative government to do more to stimulate growth in the small business sector (did you see our infographic on what the new Government proposed as part of their election pledges?).

John Allan, national chairman of the FSB, said: “It is critical the new government continues to develop the right environment to support businesses planning to grow, invest and take on new staff in the next 12 months.

“In the Budget and its upcoming Enterprise Bill, ministers should prioritise supporting small business growth, simplify business taxes, raise skills and tackle poor payment practices.”

Jonathan London Written by Jonathan London

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