Business confidence falls

082600petrol      PJ   13/6/8    (ak)

The Shell petrol station in Rowlands Castle runs out of all of its fuel on Saturday, the 2nd day of the tanker drivers strike

PICTURE: PAUL JACOBS (082600-2)

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CONFIDENCE among companies fell for the first time in six months in August, indicating world events are bringing the bullish streak in business to an end.

That is according to the latest Business Trends report put together by accountants and business advisers BDO LLP in Southampton.

The BDO Optimism Index, which predicts businesses’ growth expectations over the next six months, is still well above the 100 mark that indicates long-term average growth.

However, it fell for the first time in six months to 105.0 in August by 0.1 per cent, from 105.1 in July.

Although small, the drop gives a firm indication that economy-wide growth may plateau during the remainder of 2014, driven mainly by a steep decline in manufacturing optimism.

Manufacturers’ confidence fell from 119.9 in July to 118.8 in August.