A survey carried out by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has revealed that confidence amongst small firms has 'fallen to its lowest level since 2011'.
The FSB's Small Business Index (SBI) revealed that confidence has fallen to -9.9 – its lowest level since the wake of the financial crash in 2011.
According to the SBI, 58% of small firms believe that the domestic economy is 'restricting their ability to grow'. Lack of consumer demand, limited access to skilled staff and rising labour costs were also cited as being barriers to growth.
Commenting on the findings, Mike Cherry, National Chairman of the FSB, said: 'Two and a half years on from the Brexit vote and small businesses are looking ahead to Brexit day with no idea of what environment they'll be faced with in less than ten weeks' time.
'Come the beginning of April, small firms will not only have Brexit day to worry about but also Making Tax Digital (MTD), a higher living wage, rising auto-enrolment contributions and further business rate hikes.'