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With latest figures showing SME confidence is in positive territory, it’s been suggested that this is a significant sign for UK economy growth.

The headline confidence reading from the FSB’s Small Business Index (SBI) for Q1 2024, jumped up over 20 points to reach +5.5 points in the first three months of 2024, up from -15.0 points in the final quarter of last year.

The FSB says that outside of Covid waves, this is the first confidence reading above zero since 2018, which makes it so important that it be sustained.

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Commenting on the findings, Tina McKenzie, FSB’s Policy Chair, said, “Having small business confidence back in positive territory in the opening months of 2024 is a relief, after two years of it being underwater, and following on from a particularly difficult end to last year.

“The rebound in confidence levels in most sectors is a good indicator that the shallow recession recorded at the end of 2023 is firmly in the past, and small businesses are keen to look ahead to expansion and better trading conditions.

“Challenges do of course remain, especially for hospitality firms, whose outlook – though it made a strong recovery when compared with the end of last year – is still some way behind the other major sectors.”

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