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  • Business confidence continues to be strong in the face of difficult economic circumstances. However, the main risks of elevated costs, decreased sales, and cashflow issues remain.

  • Cost risks have remained steady in the latest survey and is a major problem for well over a third of firms.

  • Just under three-quarters of firms have reserves to last over 6 months, a slight decrease from the previous month.

  • Cashflow problems are continuing to affect nearly a quarter of businesses as a serious risk, and the survey this month shows an increase in firms reporting late payments.

  • The main business support needs are business planning, marketing, and workforce development.

  • The proportion of firms in the survey recruiting from last month has increased, however, three-fifths of firms report workforce skill gaps, in particular within sales, digital and team leadership skill / team working.