According to a Confederation of British Industry survey, 15% of SMEs were more optimistic about their general business situation and 43% were less.
The report follows news last week that the manufacturing sector is now in recession. British manufacturers showed negative growth figures for the second quarter running, with commentators predicting side effects for the rest of the economy.
Simon Bartley, vice-chair of the CBI’s SME council, said: ‘SME manufacturers are facing extreme pressure from the global slowdown. They continue to experience falling orders whether they are suppliers to larger UK manufacturers or directly to US or international companies.
‘Although the latest cut in interest rates may avert further declines in confidence, SMEs are reliant on an improvement in the global market for an upturn in business and an increase in investment,’ he added.
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