Small business confidence at three-year high

Confidence among small businesses rose to its highest level in three years, according to the latest Small Business Index released today.

Confidence rose across all parts of the UK and in most sectors, according to the quarterly index from the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), which could be good news for independent salons and spas.
The index reached 15.9 points in the second quarter, which is 9.6 points higher than at the start of 2013 and the second highest reading since the Index began in 2010.

More small businesses said they expect turnover to increase in the coming three months and more expect to grow their business in the coming year. A larger number of companies also expect to increase staffing levels in the coming three months.
The FSB has urged the Chancellor to take note of this when he delivers the Spending Review later this month and to use this opportunity to build upon these positive figures with initiatives for growth to keep confidence levels high by setting a plan to improve competition in the banking sector and to help advise small firms on alternative finance providers.

However, the report showed that while funding for lending isn't getting finance to more businesses the rates offered are becoming lower. 

It report also showed that inflationary pressures from rising energy prices are the main driver of increased business costs.

The Federation of Small Businesses national chairman John Allan said: "We know inflation is likely to remain high for the coming 12 months, largely due to rising energy costs. This is why reform of the sector is so important and why it must provide transparency for small firms to choose the best tariff for them."