Micro-enterprise hungry for guidance, officials told

A respected researcher's prediction that inflation will hit three per cent by the end of the year has unsettled the UK’s trade group for freelancers.

Responding to the prediction by NIESR, the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE) said its members were already worried about rising prices and input costs.

So inflation exceeding the target set by the Bank of England, and rising 0.4% from its current level of 2.6% in the final quarter, will deal a “major blow” to freelancers, IPSE says.

“It is imperative that the BoE protects the self-employed… by providing clear, detailed forward guidance about interest rates to help them plan for the future,” the association said.

Similar concern is being voiced by the Institute of Directors which said that, in light of the bank’s decision yesterday to hold interest rates, it was up to ministers to do the reassuring.

We would urge the government to hit the ground running when they return after recess,” the IoD said, welcoming the bank’s decision but wanting clarification on the UK’s EU exit.

“The Cabinet needs to agree between themselves, and then publically spell out, what the Brexit transition process will look like, so that business can plan accordingly.”

IPSE agrees that officials need to provide clarity, but it believes the priority should be the smallest of businesses – single-person ventures, and their first concern is the cost of business.

“The BoE must do its best to limit the damage and support the self-employed with clear forward guidance about interest rates, thus allowing them to effectively plan their financial futures,” it said.

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