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With the Bank of England making the decision to keep the base rate at 5.25%, SMEs are starting to feel more confident about planning future growth.

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) says that smaller sized businesses are hopeful that this will be the end of rising rates.

Martin McTague, FSB National Chair, commented, “This will at least be a relief for small businesses that we seem to be at the end of continually rising rates. This means they can now strategise for growth, given that we’ve, hopefully, hit inflation’s peak.

“However, rates have got to start dropping soon as many businesses are reeling from the unwelcome effects of 14 consecutive base rate hikes. Our latest Small Business Index (SBI) has begun to show business confidence creep up, from -14.2 points in Q2 of 2023 to -8 points in Q3. Now, in order for that figure to stabilise or even climb, targeted interventions are needed.”

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Martin added, “Small businesses are really feeling the double impact of high borrowing costs and reluctant customers – an unwelcome mix in an era where the cost of doing business remains notably high.

“With the Autumn Statement on the horizon, businesses are holding their breath for supportive policies. Top of the agenda should be maintaining the 75 per cent business rates relief for SMEs in retail, hospitality, and leisure. It’s currently set to expire in March and losing it could be a knockout blow to sectors already on the ropes. It’s time the promised business rates overhaul actually happens.

“The Chancellor should also tackle the late payments issue head on by making clear that it’s not acceptable for large businesses to finance their working capital at the expense of small businesses. We’d also like to see the self-employed being able to deduct the cost of training from their taxable income. This could be a transformative policy in an era when entrepreneurs need to adapt constantly to new developments.”

To find out more about contracting please contact Jaime on 01442 795 100 or email

Why Thousands of Contractors Choose Dolan Accountancy

With over 25 years experience in contractor accountancy helping thousands of contractors, freelancers and the self employed, Dolan Accountancy has the specialist skills, 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 £105 + VAT. This gives you the flexibility of using both our Limited Company Accountancy Services and our award winning Umbrella Service, for one inclusive cost.

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 795 100 or email or

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 IR35 Legislation changes 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 – 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

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