SMEs pessimistic ahead of Budget

Most small business owners fear tomorrow's Autumn Budget will not address many of their concerns, according to research from Aldermore.

Of 1,008 owners polled by the retail bank, 68% believe there will be next to nothing in chancellor Philip Hammond's red briefcase to allay their fears.

With business rates set to rise by 3.9% in April 2018, 21% either want rates to be cut or rate relief to be increased.

29% called for more investment, while 26% wanted the government to do more to prepare them for a potentially 'hard' Brexit.

An overwhelming majority (71%) demanded the government do more to help them through any possible transition period after the UK leaves the EU on 29 March 2019.

Carl D'Ammassa, managing director of business finance at Aldermore, said:

"This week's Budget provides the perfect platform for the government to highlight its backing and support for the small business community.

"SMEs are the backbone of the economy and it is vital they are given all the help possible given the current political and economic uncertainty.

"Business owners are still unsure how Brexit negotiations will play out and it is not surprising their views and opinions are divided when it comes to the impact it will have on them."

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