The business confidence index compiled by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW) climbed to a score of 22.4 for the three months to September.
It shows firms are more confident than in the three months to June, when the index scored 16.2.
Firms’ revenue has grown 5.1 per cent over the past 12 months, ICAEW said. Profits have climbed five per cent while exports, which have been held back by weak economic growth in Europe, have edged up three per cent.
Optimism is reflected in firms’ expectations. They see faster growth in revenues, profits, sales volumes and exports over the next year.
The most buoyant expectations for revenue over the next year were in construction, IT and finance.