New research published by the FSB (Small Business Federation) is showing that domestic issues such as supporting the rights of the self-employed are just as important an election concern for small businesses as Brexit.
Small businesses are keen to see the next Government make long-term investments to help support growth. 38% view investment in infrastructure as a priority and 37% say the same about investment in skills.
46% list improving support for the self-employed a key concern (both by addressing the inequality of self-employed access to social security and pensions, and by helping the self-employed access financial products).
Surprisingly, only 24% identified the issue of Brexit as the most important issue for them. However, when asked to choose all their priorities, 61% did include delivering a good Brexit deal.
In FSB’s most recent Small Business Index, a net balance of 64.5 per cent of small businesses said operating costs had risen in the last quarter, the highest since Q2 2013.
FSB National Chairman, Mike Cherry, said:
“Small firms across the board have seen the costs of doing business going up and up in recent years. The next government must help small businesses to thrive and avoid throwing more barriers – both financial and regulatory – in their way.”
This is a difficult trading period for small businesses and therefore it has never been more important to keep your cashflow as strong as possible. Cashflow is the lifeblood of any business, and with operating costs on the rise, strong cashflow will help to ensure the success of your business.
Encouragingly, despite the increase in operating costs, confidence has risen to its highest levels in over a year. The Small Business Index is up to 20.0 in Q1 2017, which is its highest level since Q4 2015 (and up considerably from -2.9 directly after the EU referendum). This has been driven by increased international trade.