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23 September 2016

Weekly Brief 38 –Friday 23 September 2016

A wrap of the week’s small business news from FSB’s London Press, Policy and Public Affairs Office. To sign-up for Weekly Brief emails, please use this link

Small business confidence drops in Q3
Small business confidence has fallen into negative territory (-2.9) for the first time in four years according to FSB’s latest Small Business Index (SBI). The Q3 survey is the first to be conducted following the EU referendum and finds small business owners concerned about the strength of the domestic economy. However, many immediate economic conditions are improving, with small firms reporting greater access to finance, a rise in new employment and reduced spare capacity in their businesses. FSB Chairman Mike Cherry spoke to BBC News about the findings. The Q3 SBI was also covered by the Financial Times, Guardian, Times and Bloomberg.        

FSB members press Chancellor on productivity and growth
A delegation of small business owners from the FSB, led by National Chairman Mike Cherry and Policy Director Martin McTague, met with the Chancellor of the Exchequer in Downing Street.  FSB members raised important issues facing their businesses with the Chancellor including how to take forward the Government’s agenda around skills, infrastructure, regional investment, and tax. We also raised the importance of the Treasury under his leadership delivering the business rates reforms announced in the March budget 2016. The meeting was featured on SME Insider. The Chancellor tweet about the meeting.

John McDonnell at FSB Labour Party Conference event (23 September 2016, 12.30pm)  

FSB will be hosting its “Small Business Question Time” at Labour Party Conference on Tuesday 23 September (12.30-1.30pm). The event will give audience members the opportunity to pose questions to John McDonnell MP, Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Martin McTague, FSB Policy Director. The event is run in partnership with the New Statesman and will be hosted by former Deputy Editor Jon Bernstein. The discussion is free to attend and will take place at New Statesmen Hub, Gower Street Carpark, Albert Dock, Liverpool. Follow the debate on twitter using the hashtag #FSB2016.

Margot James at FSB Conservative Party Conference event (4 October 2016, 3.30pm)

FSB will be hosting “The Economics Interview” at Conservative Party Conference on Tuesday 4 October (3.30pm – 5pm). The event is run in partnership with Bright Blue and will be hosted by the group’s chair Matthew d’Ancona. Audience members will here from Margot James MP, Minister for Small Business, and Martin McTague, FSB Policy Director. The event is free to attend and will take place at Jurys Inn, 245 Broad St, Birmingham B1 2HQ. Follow the interview on twitter using the hashtag #FSB2016. 

Government closes business advisory group
The Government has announced that it will no longer be assembling its business advisory group. Members of the group included chief executives from Easyjet, Rolls Royce and BP. FSB responded to the announcement, welcoming the Prime Minister’s engagement with small businesses to date and stating that now marks a good time for the Government review its business engagement structures. The FSB response appeared in The Guardian and The Sun.    

ACAS launches management guide
The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) has launched a new guide for first tier managers. Managing People offers advice on successful team leadership, effective recruitment and motivating staff. The guide is an excellent free resource for small businesses and is available to download here.    

Has your business been a beneficiary of EU Funding?
We are keen to talk to any small business that have been a beneficiary of EU Funding. This could be directly, in the form of a grant or loan, or indirectly by receiving business support from an EU funded project. If this is you and you’re keen to help, please get in touch with Greg Warren in the London Policy Team.

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