January’s blog comes from Graham Taylor, Portfolio Director of Langdowns DFK. Graham works with a wide range of clients and oversees many of our specialist assignments, such as charities, solicitors, and estate agents. Graham is a keen sports fan and avid Saints supporter, as well as a father of two.
2012 will be a great year!
Needless to say, there don’t seem to be too many people around these days saying this at the moment. A few minutes of listening to Robert Peston on BBC’s news programmes telling you about the doom and gloom around the economy, and it’s very easy to feel like the Mayan civilization maybe got it right in their prediction of the World coming to an end on 23rd December 2012 (a real pain for me, I have to say, as my birthday’s not until 5 days after!)
Yet, for me, there is one key ingredient that anyone must have, individual or business, to try to ensure 2012 becomes a “great year” and that is CONFIDENCE.
Don’t get me wrong – there is no doubt 2012 presents many financial pressures on both a macro and micro scale. But, when all you are hit with on news headlines and front pages is the negatives, it is very hard sometimes to find positivity. Yet positivity breeds confidence, and confidence is absolutely fundamental in getting any business (or country!) on the right course.
Positive news is out there: Inflation is on the fall – latest figures show UK inflation was 4.2% for December, and the Bank of England are now confident this will fall to 2% by the latter part of 2012 (their ideal target)
This makes it a lot easier for the Bank of England to then justify increasing their quantitative easing program, and this should help significantly to stimulate growth in the UK economy (even their last announcement to extend this by a further £75billion will only be completed early next month !)
The World Bank is still predicting that the whole Eurozone will only contract by 0.3% in 2012. Given the well-publicised problems of Greece, Italy, Portugal and Ireland, this still suggests there are opportunities for expansion within the UK’s biggest trading partners.
Interest rates are still at an all time low, and the UK is one of the few European countries at the moment to seem capable of maintaining its “AAA” credit rating following a series of down-grades amongst the rest of Europe, most notably France.
The eyes of the World will be firmly on the UK this year, with both the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations and, of course, the Olympic Games to shout about.
A number of clients I am speaking to do have very positive outlooks for their own businesses into 2012, and I think it is this focus on growth opportunities (usually having already pulled in the purse-strings on overheads by now) that are likely to lead to the most success going on to thrive over the next 12 months. And I wouldn’t be an accountant if I didn’t say, make sure you have produced budgets and forecasts. These give you valuable indicator of resource and funding requirements, which as we know are not always easy to come by. They also provide a means of measuring success or identifying when things are straying from an initial plan.
My belief leading into 2012 is that it can be truly inspirational, not just to you individually but to all those around you too. I certainly believe 2012 carries lots of potential (and, who knows, maybe even a record medal haul for our Olympians, a European Championship for our football team, and Premiership football for the Saints… well, it does not harm to believe!)
PS : I am still planning to celebrate that birthday in style!
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