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Midlands business leaders are amongst the most confident about the UK economy following COVID-19

Midlands business leaders are amongst the most confident about the UK economy following COVID-19

45% of Midlands businesses have confidence in the resilience of the UK economy over the next 12 months, compared to an average 29% nationwide, according to a BDO LLP poll released today

West Midlands business leaders (50%) are more optimistic than their East Midlands counterparts (40%)

Despite the confidence, over a third (38%) believe it will be slow two-year grind back to pre-COVID levels of activity

The monthly /Rethinking the Economy/ survey of 500 mid-sized businesses conducted by accountancy and business advisory firm BDO LLP, revealed a vote of confidence in the future of the UK economy and more than half (52%) have seen revenues stay the same or increase compared with this time 12 months ago.

Commenting on the findings, Tim Foster, partner at BDO LLP in the Midlands said: “The region’s business leaders are confident because they’ve taken decisive action to address the financial impact and disruption caused by COVID-19. 40% of business leaders in the West Midlands feel they are succeeding in the new reality compared to 17% of East Midlands companies.”

Midlands business leaders are now addressing key operational concerns, confirming the top three priorities as protecting employee wellbeing and safety (63%), managing supply chains (42%) and generating sales (42%) – ranking ahead of cashflow and making redundancies.

Tim Foster concluded:“There’s no avoiding that the challenges and impacts of the pandemic are still very real and far from over. Unfortunately, redundancies are still a possibility in the region. The risk of job cuts is seemingly higher the East Midlands, with 70% of companies expecting to make redundancies once the furlough support scheme ends, compared with 37% of businesses in the West Midlands.

“What is reassuring at this time, is the encouraging levels of confidence amongst the region’s businesses and those which have maintained or experienced a rise in revenues. This better places companies to bounce back from the impacts of COVID-19 and reduce the potential for large-scale job losses and declines in revenue.”

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