Finance SMEs optimistic about economic prospects, study shows
A report from Hampshire Trust Bank has shown that more than 50 per cent of UK SMEs are feeling optimistic about the long-term economic prospects of their industry, with finance and accountancy firms being amongst the sectors that are feeling the most positive.
The specialist bank’s SME Growth Watch highlighted the importance of business confidence when it comes to economic growth, with 56 per cent of finance and accounting businesses feeling optimistic about their long-term economic prospects.
The research also revealed the main challenges for UK businesses, with more than 40 per cent citing economic uncertainty as a main barrier to growth and development, whilst 33 per cent believe that competition is the top challenge. Regulation and lack of consumer spending was also found to be a main barrier for 25 per cent of businesses.
Despite these barriers, Hampshire Bank’s SME Growth Watch showed that SMEs continue to be resilient, with businesses in the top ten UK cities that were monitored in the research being forecast to significantly boost their long-term economic contribution.
SMEs are forecasted to add £241 billion to the UK economy by 2025, up by 19 per cent from £202 billion in 2016.
Hampshire Trust Bank is now calling for support for SMEs, with the bank stating that it is down to the government to help create the right conditions for small businesses to improve business confidence and to help make sure that they continue to prosper.