Firms reduce investment to cover business rates rise

Small businesses are preparing to reduce investment and raise prices to cover their business rates, according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

Out of 675 business members surveyed, 36% expect to see their business rates increase as part of the revaluation from 1 April 2017.

Of those facing a rate rise, 44% said their business rates will reach more than £1,000 per year.

1 in 5 members said they will see their annual bill increase by more than 40%.

This rise in costs mean that 55% are planning to lower their current level of investment or delay, or cancel planned investments altogether.

Further findings:

  • 54% expect profits to fall
  • 38% are set to increase their prices
  • 19% may consider closing or selling their business.

Mike Cherry, national chairman at FSB, said:

“Profitability across the UK small business community is already falling. The costs of doing business for small firms are now at their highest levels since early 2014.

“The last thing we need is a business rates burden so heavy that it threatens the future growth prospects of our entrepreneurs.”

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