Finance directors of small and medium-sized businesses are beginning to turn against the euro, this week’s Accountancy Age/Reed Accountancy Personnel The Big Question has shown.
The survey is the clearest indication yet that business hostility to the euro is growing. Just eight months ago 66% of FDs said the Conservative party’s policy to rule out joining the euro in the next parliament was wrong.
This time just 42% of the 224 finance directors of small and medium-sized businesses who responded said the UK should not join the single currency during the lifetime of the next parliament. The results come after the euro hit a record low last month.
FDs’ concerns about the euro centred on the recent volatility of the single currency and the relative strength of the UK economy.
‘The benefits to the UK are still totally unproved,’ said Ian Rae, of Penlon, the medical equipment manufacturer.
Another believed the UK’s economy could prosper outside the euro. ‘Britain is the largest economy in Europe with a strong currency. We don’t need to be part of a European currency,’ he said.
But 41% of FDs believed the UK should join Euroland to reap the economic benefits of the single currency. Stephen Lovejoy, of New Hampshire Ball Bearings, said: ‘UK companies will be marginalised. We’re beginning to be asked to quote in euros.’
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