British confidence remains highPosted 2015 by admin
According to the latest Business in Britain report from Lloyds Bank, overall business confidence remains strong and stable.
This positive attitude is largely underpinned by companies’ expectations of an improvement in exports, as well as an anticipated increase in investment levels.
The twice-yearly Lloyds Bank report gathers the views of 1,500 UK companies – predominantly small to medium sized businesses, or SMEs – and tracks the overall balance of opinion on a range of important performance and confidence measures.
The report’s overall key confidence index, which looks at businesses sentiment over the coming six months, has remained stable at 43 per cent compared with January 2015. Although the latest reading is down from the survey’s high of 53 per cent recorded 12 months ago, it remains above the long-term average reading of 23 per cent. Expectations of employment growth and a resurgent export market suggest strong economic prospects for the second half of the year.
Some 29 per cent of the firms surveyed said that weaker UK demand poses the greatest threat to their business in the next six months. This could explain why firms expect to increase their sales in global markets.
The net balance of exporters expecting an increase in total exports across the globe has risen to 46 per cent. This has been boosted by firms’ intentions to export to growing regions such as the Middle East and Africa. In particular, the increase in total exports has been driven by the number of exporters expecting an increase in trade with Europe in the next six months.
Business confidence has remained relatively strong with encouraging expectations for sales, orders and profits for the rest of the year. This has been underlined by a bounce back in exports to Europe as well as companies’ intentions to grow their presence further on the international stage.
However, it will be interesting to see how the situation in Greece affects the future confidence of British SMEs.