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Predictions for business in 2018

The Institute of Directors (IoD) recently released its predictions for business for 2018 across 14 different areas. For 2017 it correctly predicted that Theresa May would trigger Article 50, that UK tax revenues would continue to disappoint, that populist parties would continue to cause upset, that there would be a significant cyber attack, and that European banks would be in serious trouble. Based on this track record, businesses in all sectors should definitely take notice and plan accordingly.

Their 2018 predictions cover 14 key areas including the economy, corporate governance, employment, tax, transport and communications, Europe and trade, and technology and entrepreneurialism.

Of note, the predictions suggest a slow down in growth in the South East, allowing other UK regions to catch up. Strength in the manufacturing sector will continue to help support the South through Brexit uncertainty (take a look at our recent blog post on the state of the manufacturing sector).

The continued decline in net migration will also impact businesses, making it harder to find the people needed to fulfill critical roles, leading to some businesses downsizing or even failing.

Reform of the way self-employed people are taxed is another prediction put forward by the IoD. There has been a move over the last few years towards self employment, bringing this issue front of mind for the government. On a positive note it is thought that business tax reliefs will remain as they are.

Despite uncertainties, The UK will continue to innovate. According to the IoD’s latest survey on start-up confidence, UK entrepreneurs are coming into 2018 with a positive attitude towards jobs and investment in their firms. At the same time, the UK’s ranking in the Global Entrepreneurship Index has jumped from 8th in 2017 to 4th this year. All very good news for the jobs market and economy as a whole.

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