SME confidence growing as restrictions ease

(2 minutes to read)

FSB: ‘It’s fantastic that our shops, hairdressers and gyms can get back to doing what they do best all over England’.

With the next stage of easing out of lockdown having started on Monday, confidence is growing among the UK’s smaller sized businesses.

A recent Federation of Small Businesses(FSB) study of almost 1,700 business owners found that 58% of SMEs expect their performance to improve this quarter, with 31% expecting it to worsen.

The FSB’s UK Small Business Index (SBI) confidence measure has risen to +27.3 in Q1 of this year, up from -49.3 last quarter. The index is at its highest level since Q3 2014, when it hit +41.0, and is in positive territory for the first time since Q2 2018.

More than half (51%) of those surveyed for the SBI expect their revenues to increase over the coming three months – this is the highest proportion in six years.

FSB National Chairman Mike Cherry, commented, “It’s fantastic that our shops, hairdressers and gyms can get back to doing what they do best all over England from [today], with some restrictions easing in other parts of the UK as well.

“The certainty provided by the government’s road-map is filling many small business owners with renewed confidence. We live in hope that the virus stays in retreat so the remaining indicative dates for unlocking can be met, enabling our vital night time economies, offices and travel and tourism businesses to get back to it as well.”

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Mike added, “It’s worrying to see such a sizeable proportion of employers fearing redundancies over the coming months. Initiatives like Kickstart, as well as incentives to take on apprentices and trainees, need to be delivered efficiently over the coming months to protect against a job market shock and support the young people that have disproportionately borne the brunt of rising unemployment.

“Policymakers also need to look at measures to encourage hiring activity. Bringing down the non-wage costs of employment, starting with employer national insurance contributions, which essentially serve as a jobs tax, would certainly help.

“With emergency loan repayments now starting to bite, the government should carefully consider routes to realising economic value from the facilities it has underwritten: an approach to repayment based on the student loan model and greater adoption of employee ownership trusts could both mark constructive ways forward.

“Lockdowns have caused our £23bn late payment crisis to deepen. As confidence returns, now is the time to bring forward reforms that will help audit committees gain full visibility of payment practices.

“As the economy shifts, support measures need to evolve – particularly where support for start-ups is concerned. The Help to Grow initiative should be urgently reformed in order to both widen its support remit and make it open to all small business owners as they start out, not just those that already have staff.”

To find out more about contracting please contact Jaime on 01442 795 100 or email jaime.thorpe@dolanaccountancy.com.

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Why Dolan Accountancy?

Dolan Accountancy was set up by Simon J Dolan, the man behind the well-known brand SJD Accountancy. With over 25 years experience in the contracting marketing, Dolan Accountancy has the heritage, reputation and credibility you can trust. Working closely with our sister company, Contractor Umbrella, it means we can offer one low cost, fixed fee package at £95 + VAT per month. This gives you the flexibility of using both our Limited Company Accountancy Services and our award winning Umbrella Service, for one inclusive cost. We don’t believe in tiered packages or hidden extra fees, instead we aim to give you everything you need, including:

  • Free Company Formation – This is where it all begins. Once you have decided on an available name, we will form your company free of charge (if using our accountancy services) and it will be ready for you to use in as little as three hours.
  • Free use of Contractor Umbrella – With changes in Public Sector IR35 Legislation we understand that sometimes you are required to contract via an umbrella company. We will keep your limited company ticking over, while you work margin free via our sister company, Contractor Umbrella.
  • A Dedicated Accountant – Your accountant will be there for any company or personal tax advice that you require. We will never outsource work, even to internal teams.
  • Free Access to FreeAgent – The founder behind the multi award winning FreeAgent platform was one of Simon’s first clients, therefore it only seems fitting that we offer all of our clients access to FreeAgent, free of charge.
  • Free Business Banking – We have decided to waive our commission so our clients can use Tide free of charge for the first year.
  • Unlimited IR35 Status Reviews – We will review all of your contracts for IR35 purposes and provide you with our professional opinion as to its status.
  • Free Registered and Director’s Service Office Address – Sometimes you just don’t want your home address on display at Companies House. When you sign up to our accountancy services, we will offer the use of our address as an alternative.
  • Your Business and Personal Taxation Needs – This includes Company Accounts, Director’s Personal Tax Return, VAT Returns, Payroll, Corporation Tax and Dividend advice, to name just a few.
  • Same day payments- We offer same day payments as standard providing funds are received into our account by 9am, for no additional fee.

If you’d like to find out more about how Dolan Accountancy can help you and your business, please give us a call on 01442 795100 or email sophie.lewis@dolanaccountancy.com or jaime.thorpe@dolanaccountancy.com.

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