Metro (UK)

Confidence at record high as firms eye bright future

- By JOEL TAYLOR

CONFIDENCE among big businesses about their profits in the year ahead has hit a record high, shows a survey by accounting giant Deloitte.

Cheered by the Covid jab rollout and hopes of lessening Brexit disruption, company finance chiefs have never been more optimistic in the 13 years the quarterly poll has been running. Many are planning to increase their recruitmen­t and investment.

‘Brexit has been a significan­t dampener in the last four years but with the UK’s final departure from the EU, such effects are fading,’ Deloitte chief economist Ian Stewart said. ‘Combined with a successful vaccine rollout and a greatly improved global backdrop, we are seeing a turbo-charged surge in optimism.’

Almost a tenth of finance directors faced significan­t or severe disruption due to Brexit, the poll shows. But only three per cent expect the problems will be just as bad in a year’s time. Meanwhile, bosses expect most workers to return to offices between July and September.

A separate FSB poll shows small firms are at their most confident in more than six years, but one in seven is likely to make redundanci­es this quarter.

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