Have Brexit and Trump impacted Business Outlook?

In our latest study, we asked 475 professionals if they thought their company was likely to perform better in 2017 than it did in 2016. In the UK, expectations vary greatly by industry and employees' level of seniority, with millennials and technology professionals being particularly optimistic. In the US, results show an overwhelming confidence: 81% of professionals expect their business to do better under the first year of Trump presidency than in 2016.

2017 : UK by industry

Web & Apps83%17%
Technology & Telecoms77%23%
Consulting & Professional Services68%32%
Financial Services59%41%
Media & Communication43%57%

A booming technology sector, no matter what. The UK startup and technology scene has been thriving in the last few years. Its professionals appear to think that the sector's organic growth will be sufficient to cancel out any Brexit fallout: 83% of employees working in the British web industry expect 2017 to be better than 2016, and 77% of those working in technology agree.

Retail : good times are already over? While 2016 was a record year for UK retailers, this golden era is not expected to last by those in the industry: with a lower Pound and uncertainty over the UK's access to the single market, retail professionals are more pessimistic than other employees (60% believe their business will not do better in 2017 versus 2016).

2017: UK by level of experience

Years of experienceYesNo

Optimistic millennials. Last June, millennials appeared to be devastated by the results of the Brexit vote, and blamed older generations for jeopardising their future. Younger professionals seem to have recovered their optimism with 69% of those with less than 5 years' professional experience believing 2017 will be a better year for their business.

2017: By country

Hong Kong64%36%

Make America great again? 2016 has been a strong year for the US economy, with the lowest unemployment rate in a decade, but American professionals expect 2017 to be even better : 81% think the first year of Trump presidency will improve their business' outlook.

Worried Brits. Even though most UK professionals (59%) believe 2017 will be better than 2016, they still rank second to last in our study behind Russia and France. Uncertainty around the impact of Brexit negotiations may well have clouded the horizon for many professionals, especially with large banks announcing substantial transfer of staff overseas in the last few weeks.

Is the future bright for business? Uncertainty is a dampener when it comes to business outlooks for 2017. Countries with key electoral deadlines - such as France - still looming on the calendar are fearful of the impact of new policies, while countries which have already jumped the hurdle, such as the US, seem to embrace the new order with more optimism. The UK however, despite having already voted for Brexit last June still grapples with blurred vision generated by this decision: UK professionals have wildly divergent outlooks for 2017, mostly based on their industry sector.


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