A survey has revealed that many SMEs remain doubtful about the lifting of lockdown restrictions next month, with small businesses the ones that are least convinced it will happen.
The plan is for all restrictions to be lifted on 21st June, but this survey by Nucleus Commercial Finance found that there are widespread doubts that it will happen. Small businesses are most likely to be sceptical, with three times as many of them expecting a further delay compared with medium-sized firms. A total of 21% of small companies expect restrictions to remain in place, while just 7% of medium-sized ones do.
As well as doubts about whether the reopening of the country will run according to schedule, SMEs also indicated that they are worried about further lockdowns being introduced in the future. Only one out of every 10 of the SMEs that Nucleus spoke to – which amounts to 12% – said that they expect full reopening on 21st and no more lockdowns in the future.
On the other hand, three out of every 10 – 30% – are uncertain about whether there will be a delay in reopening. Another 26% expect such a delay to be announced, with potentially drastic consequences for their businesses.
The results also show that London and the South West are the regions where worries among SMEs are highest, at 38% and 44%, compared with 23% among North West businesses. The round-the-clock availability of business accountants in Goole and other parts of the North West can help firms based there cope with financial stresses.