British CFOs are targeting cash in hand and bullet-proof balance sheets as the gloom over the Brexit impact deepens. According to a Deloitte study reported by Reuters, 81% of UK businesses now expect a long-term deterioration in the country’s business environment due to Brexit.
When the last quarterly survey of business sentiment related to Brexit was conducted, only 78% of the businesses surveyed expected a long-term deterioration in the business environment. Deloitte conducted the survey after it became certain that the UK will not leave the EU on the original date fixed for the event—March 29.
Investment in the UK fell for every quarter of 2018 for the longest such decline since the financial crisis of 2008.
Pessimism reigns among UK CFOs with regard to the short-term impact of Brexit as well. Nearly half of the surveyed CFOs expect to reduce their capital expenditures while less than a quarter expect to reduce mergers and acquisitions.
More than half of the CFOs plan to reduce hiring because of the impact of Brexit, according to the survey. A separate survey by Morgan McKinley, a recruitment consultant, shows that London now has only half the number of jobs and jobseekers in financial services since 2017 because of Brexit uncertainty, according to The Guardian.