Confidence among banking, finance and insurance professionals has risen this quarter while most other sectors saw falls, according to the latest Grant Thornton UK business confidence monitor.
Financial services saw confidence rise from +21.7 points to +26.4 points since the end of the third quarter this year, according to the survey of 1,000 professionals carried out with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
However, fears are mounting of waning customer demand in the fourth quarter, with to 41 per cent of firms in the sector reporting customer demand is a greater challenge than 12 mon-ths ago, up from 28 per cent in the third quarter.
Grant Thornton head of financial services Peter Allen says: “Confidence in the financial services sector has held up this quarter and has certainly fared better than most other sectors, with our data on financial performance showing a tentative return to growth. Although the financial services industry is planning for growth rather than contraction, growth forecasts are still well below the levels that we used to see before the recession.”