FSB 'Voice of Small Business' Index - The Scottish index
The FSB's ‘Voice of Small Business' Index has been created using the views of small businesses from the FSB's survey panel.
The index looks at capacity levels, employment, revenues and the confidence of small firms. From the third quarter of 2012, the FSB began to produce a Scottish analysis of the results.
Scottish small business confidence rose in the second quarter of 2015 but an increasing proportion of firms are warning about skills shortages. The report reveals that while Scottish confidence tracks behind the UK average, a growing balance of Scottish FSB members believe that business conditions are set to improve.
Scottish small business confidence rose in the first quarter of 2015 but was still down in comparison to the first quarter of 2014. The Index showed that both profit and revenue growth weakened over the first quarter of the year. That said, firms expected both revenue and profits to improve on the approach to summer.
The report showed that Scottish small business confidence tracked below the UK average for a second quarter in a row. However, investment intentions were up in comparison to the same point last year and profits were rising.
Scottish small business confidence fell below the UK average in the third quarter of 2014.
The report showed that while average small business confidence grew across the UK as a whole in the third quarter of 2014, it fell in Scotland. However, the figure is still in positive territory and higher than at this point in last year. The report also highlights growing revenues and falling levels of spare capacity in Scottish small enterprises.
Scottish small business confidence was higher than the UK average in the second quarter of 2014.
The Index showed that while small business confidence was growing across the UK, an average firm in Scotland wass more bullish than its counterpart in England and Wales. The analysis also showed that, as spare capacity in small business fell, recruitment intentions were at their highest level since the research began in the first quarter of 2010.
Scottish small business confidence rose to match the UK average in the first quarter of 2014.
The Index showed Scottish small business confidence rising in the first quarter of 2014 to its highest level since the data series began at the start of 2010. The Scottish confidence index measures +36 points this quarter, up 15 points since the last measurement, and is now slightly higher than the UK average of +35.7 points.
Scottish small businesses were planning to increase their staff numbers and boost capital investment in 2014, the last small business confidence index of 2013 showed.
Our research showed that despite business confidence taking a seasonal dip it remained much higher than it was in the same quarter of the previous three years.
Scottish small businesses were at their most confident in three years, the third confidence index of 2013 showed. After rising for four successive quarters, Scottish small business confidence was at its highest since the start of 2010 - however the Scottish figure continued to lag behind the UK average.
Confidence reached a three year high and rose in all parts of the UK in the second quarter of 2013. The Index reached +15.9 points which is significantly higher than at the start of 2013.
The FSB's first economic report of 2013 suggested tentative signs of growing optimism among small businesses. Scottish small business confidence rose in the first quarter of 2013 but still lagged behind the UK average.