Small businesses’ confidence has increased this quarter but many don’t plan on growth, suggests a recent study.

Results from the ‘Voice of Small Business’ Index from the Federation of Small Business (FSB) show that there has been an increase in confidence, which has moved from -5.6 in Q4 of 2012 to +6.3 in Q1 of 2013.  This indicates that the UK economy is taking small steps towards recovery.

Unfortunately the results also show that fewer businesses are expecting to grow this year, with the figure for 2013 Q1 down to just 54% (in 2012 Q4 it was 56%). Companies list some of the barriers to growth as domestic economy, access to finance and consumer demand.

FSB national chairman John Walker says that it is “great news” that confidence is beginning to edge up and is back in positive territory.

This bodes well for GDP figures for Q1 and we would expect them to be better than the -0.3 per cent recorded in Q4 2012. 

However, we know that inflationary pressures are likely to persist in 2013, especially through rising energy bills and fuel costs and this will affect disposable incomes.”

It will be interesting to see what is addressed at the 2013 budget on the 20th March. What would you like to see the government announce?

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