Scottish business confidence improves, but remains weakest in UK

The Business Barometer produced by Bank of Scotland has revealed that overall confidence in October was -3%, an improvement of 15 points from September.

Scottish companies show a net balance of 2% in terms of their own business prospects last month, which is a seven-point increase from September.

A generally negative consensus regarding the outlook of the economy meant that the headline reading was at -3%, compared with the UK average of 6%.

Scottish firms continue attempts to hire more staff, with a net balance of 4% of companies planning to increase their headcount over the next year, compared with -7% in September.

The Barometer also revealed that a net balance of 24% of the Scottish respondents said that Brexit uncertainty was having a negative impact on their expectations, this was down eight points on the September score.

The barometer takes in responses from 1,200 businesses across the UK.

The Times reported that Scottish members of the Institute of Directors were bullish over their prospects for the next 12 months.

Those attending the group’s annual conference at Gleneagles on Friday were asked if they intended to increase investment, with 75% responding that they were.

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