Global business confidence has slumped to a five-year low due to slow growth in Europe, Japan, and key emerging markets.
The Markit global business outlook survey results released today shows business optimism falling sharply in October. However, UK companies were the most upbeat about the year ahead.
A sharp downturn in business optimism has been registered in the US, hitting a five-year low. But US firms were still more confident than their counterparts in the Eurozone and Japan.
There was divergence within the Eurozone, with confidence subdued in Germany and France, but buoyant in Spain and Italy. Economic growth has struggled to gain traction in the Eurozone, Japan and major emerging markets such as Russia and China.
“Clouds are gathering over the global economic outlook, presenting the darkest picture seen since the global financial crisis,” said economist Chris Williamson from Markit.