Business confidence in the South West of England rose two points during April to nine percent, according to the latest Business Barometer from Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking.
Companies in the South West report higher confidence in their business prospects at 20 percent, up five points on last month. When combined with their views on the economy, this gives an overall confidence of nine percent.
Businesses in the region also expect to hire more staff, with a net balance of 17 percent looking to increase their headcount during the next year, up seven points on last month.
Across the region, a net balance of 30 percent of businesses say that the UK’s exit from the European Union is having a negative impact on their expectations for business activity, up 12 points on a month ago.
The Business Barometer questions 1,200 businesses monthly and provides early signals about UK economic trends both regionally and nationwide.
Adam Rainey, regional director for the South West at Lloyds Bank Commercial Banking, said: “Despite ongoing uncertainty, businesses in the South West are increasingly confident about their own prospects and are acting on that by planning to create new jobs in the year ahead.
“We will be by their side as they pursue growth and have committed to lend up to £1.5bn to South West businesses this year to help them achieve their goals.”