Two in five businesses expect the Spring Budget will leave the economy worse off
March 5th, 2024, Christien Pheby

Two in five businesses expect the Spring Budget will leave the economy worse off

Business expectations are low ahead of the 2024 Spring Budget. YouGov polled 1,007 senior decision makers in organisations across the country: from micro businesses with fewer than 10 employees to businesses employing 250 people or more.

We found that 32% expect the Budget to leave businesses across the country worse off, compared to 15% who think it will make things better. Some 41% think the Chancellor’s interventions won’t make a difference either way.

SMEs are a little more cynical – 36% anticipate that the Budget will make life more difficult for businesses, 10% think it will improve the picture, and 41% think it won’t matter either way – but larger enterprises are more optimistic. Among organisations with more than 250 employees, 25% believe the Budget will have a detrimental effect, 23% think it will be positive, and, again, 41% think it won’t make a difference.

Businesses are even more cynical when it comes to the statement’s impact on the economy: some 40% say it will leave it worse off, while just 15% think it will boost the nation’s financial state, and 36% believe it won’t change things in either direction.

SMEs are again more pessimistic (42% worse; 10% better; 37% no difference) while large organisations have a slightly sunnier outlook (36% worse; 23% better; 34% no difference).

Business decision makers say the government isn’t doing enough to support small and micro businesses 

We also asked senior decision makers if they think the government is doing enough to support different sizes of business. Some 51% said it wasn’t doing enough to support micro businesses, with 61% saying the same of smaller enterprises and a further 34% saying the same of medium-sized businesses.

Ahead of the Budget, there may be a perception among some senior leaders that the government is focusing too heavily on big business: overall, 41% say there is currently too much support for large enterprises, with just 14% saying there is too little.


YouGov Surveys: Serviced provide quick survey results from nationally representative or targeted audiences in multiple markets. This study was conducted online on 26 February – 4 March 2024, with a nationally representative sample of 1,007 businesses decision makers  (aged 18+ years) in Great Britain, using a questionnaire designed by YouGov. Learn more about YouGov Surveys: Serviced.

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