Accounting sector ‘upbeat for future’

A SURVEY providing a snapshot of sentiment in the accounting industry, shows that the sector remains upbeat on its future fortunes.

More than half (55%) of respondents to a survey carried out by representative body, Accounting Technicians Ireland, expressed confidence in business activity levels either remaining stable or growing over the next 12 months.

“Accounting technicians are at the coalface of finance and are ideally positioned to gauge the business barometer.

“While economic conditions remain deeply challenging it is encouraging to see that half of the respondents believe that business levels are stabilising and may even grow.

“However, it is also clear that the past 12 months have weighed very heavily on many businesses who have had to take hard measures to survive,” according to Accounting Technicians Ireland chief executive, Gay Sheehan.

This latest survey comes just a week after KBC Bank issued its third-quarter business sentiment index, which showed that the level of confidence in the country’s economic recovery, among Irish businesses – across a number of sectors – had deteriorated dramatically since the preceding quarter, with 35% of respondents less optimistic than they had been.

However, the accounting survey isn’t totally positive, either. While nearly half of all respondents felt that their job is secure for the immediate future, a quarter felt this was not the case. And, on the subject of job levels within companies, 50% of firms said they had to let people go over the course of the last year, while nearly three quarters said they don’t anticipate being in a position to increase staff levels over the next 12 months.

In addition, about half said they expect pay levels to remain stable, with just under 30% anticipating pay cuts; while just over 60% of respondents said they feel that overall economic conditions are deteriorating.


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