Smaller firms expect good times ahead

Andy Gornall, Head of Business Banking for Barclays in the North West
Andy Gornall, Head of Business Banking for Barclays in the North West

BOROUGH businesses are becoming increasingly optimistic about their prospects.

Seven in 10 smaller enterprises nationally say they expect GDP to continue rising next year.

Andy Gornall, head of business banking for Barclays in the North West, said: “There is no doubt that confidence is booming following the latest GDP figures showing growth of 0.9 per cent for the second quarter of 2014.

“Small businesses are benefiting from a robust UK economic recovery, with turnover growth rebuilding momentum and today’s figures demonstrate just how far GDP has surpassed pre-recession levels.

“We’re seeing positive expectations from UK SMEs for future GDP growth, right into 2015 and as the heartbeat of the economy, it is vital that these businesses plan ahead and make the most of the opportunities available to grow in the coming months.”

Research from Barclays polled over 500 small and medium enterprises (SMEs) at the start of July 2014 on their outlook for GDP growth for the 12 months ahead, and reveals there is further optimism to come.

Some 67 per cent of UK SMEs believe that the UK economy is set for growth over the next year.

In addition, just under a quarter (22 per cent) are predicting the economy will stay the same with only four per cent bracing themselves for a decline.

Out of the total UK small businesses, large-sized SMEs are the most positive in their GDP predictions with eight in 10 forecasting growth over the next year, and mid-sized SMEs revealing themselves as the second most confident with 70 per cent expecting growth.

Furthermore, small businesses that were set up before 1990, are the most bullish in their predictions for the outlook of the UK economy over the next 12 months, with nearly three quarters forecasting growth, resulting in a substantial predicted net growth of 74 per cent.

Borough figures bear the improving conditions out with unemployment tumbling month after month. It has now reached pre-recession levels.