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Retail Growth Reaches Four Year Low

Hitachi Capital Business Finance, a leading name in financial services, has revealed that the retail sector now has the lowest growth outlook in recent history.

Figures from the global financial service provider show that only 31% of small businesses in the retail sector are predicting growth in the first few months of 2020 with many sighting the possible impact of Brexit and economic volatility as the two major reasons for concern

 

Top 10 issues on the minds of business owners

 

Issue Percentage
The possible impact of Brexit 31%
Economic volatility 31%
Managing cash flow 27%
Retaining business 21%
Red tape 21%
Tax and interest rates 19%
Compliance and regulations 17%
Weather 16%
Business rates 13%
Borrowing and lending 7%

Gavin Wraith-Carter, Managing Director at Hitachi Capital Business Finance, said: “Last year small businesses had to adapt to a period of protracted Brexit uncertainty and the economic ripple it delivered to sectors across the UK. We start 2020 with far greater certainty, and our research suggests small businesses have switched from staying afloat through cost-cutting to a new era of planning for sales growth, investing in people and product diversification to boost bottom-line growth. While 10% of business leaders are investing in training, the remaining 90% should be giving this serious thought, and what options that are available to businesses.

“Our research also suggests that more small business owners recognise the need to adopt flexibility in their budgeting, whilst safeguarding their financial strength by building up their financial reserves. These factors point towards 2020 being a year when more small businesses will be looking for finance to help to realise their growth ambitions. We would encourage business owners to shop around, to look beyond the high street lenders and talk to specialists that can offer flexible solutions that are tailored to the needs of their business.”

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