UK business confidence at highest level since 2015
UK business optimism rose to its highest since 2015, fuelled by the rollout of the COVID-19 vaccination programme, according to the Accenture/ IHS Markit UK Business Outlook. More than six times as many UK private sector firms (68%) expect an increase in business activity during the year ahead as those that forecast a reduction (11%). At +57% in February, the resulting net balance was up sharply from +34% last October, signalling the highest levels of business optimism since June 2015. The improvement in UK business confidence in recent months has largely been driven by a rebound in the service sector, with its net balance rising from +32% to +56% in February.