SMEs remain positive about outlook of 2018

Posted on: 09/03/2018

Latest research conducted by Hitachi Capital Business Finance finds that the confidence of UK SMEs remains strong in Q1 2018, with over a third (39%) of these SME owners predicted growth for the first three months to 31st March 2018.

The Technology and Telecoms sectors were the most optimistic, with 52% of SMEs in this sector predicting growth on Q1.

The most confident sector reported over the last 12 months is transport and distribution, which has increased from 13% to 35%, with the biggest fall in confidence reported in the finance and accounting sector, down 9% to 42%.

Over 70% of SMEs have identified strategies for growth over the upcoming months, with over a third (36%) of these SMEs focusing on cutting costs as a priority. Improving cash flow (19%) and planning to invest in new equipment (13%) were also identified as the key strategies for growth.

Gavin Wraith-Carter, Managing Director at Hitachi Capital Business Finance, comments:

A day barely seems to go past without warnings about the UK’s economic future: Brexit seems to have created an entire industry selling doom. The day-to-day reality with small businesses is quite different.

“Many are fully aware there will be a Brexit ripple that affects them at some point, but the majority of small business owners are being very pragmatic, planning ahead and focusing on what is within their control.

“Some sectors see market uncertainty as an opportunity, many businesses are already looking to open up new markets and, across the board, SMEs are key for employment and job creation.”

Source: Bridging and Commercial, 2017

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