Business confidence worst since recession days

Business confidence across sectors in the UK has fallen to its lowest level since the recession of 2008 and 2009, reports out today have revealed.

The UK Business Confidence Monitor, which surveys approximately 1000 key members of the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales), showed a fall in confidence from 13.7 to 8.1 during the third quarter of 2011.

Confidence in the last quarter (Q3, 2009) of the UK’s recession was recorded at 4.8, having dipped to -45.3 at the start of 2009.

The reports also reveal the opinions of businesses about what they see as major challenges to growth.

Red tape and tax issues were highlighted frequently as problems businesses are facing, in spite of the red tape website initiative launched recently, as a lack of urgency was cited as a failing of the government. 40% of those surveyed indeed feel that red tape is now a bigger problem than it was a year ago.

Confidence in the manufacturing and retail sectors also continued to fall, as it was revealed today that 1 in 10 shops in UK cities and towns are now vacant.

But businesses still remain positive when it comes to exports. Export growth is expected to be 4.4%, as UK businesses look to exploit various markets abroad.