Small businesses in transport and distribution are looking forward to “a new era of planning for sales growth” according to latest research, which claimed Brexit uncertainty had now been cast aside.

Figures from Hitachi Capital Business Finance (HCBF) showed growth prospects for small firms in the sector had increased for the fourth successive quarter.

Growth outlook had jumped to 34%, from 29% at the end of last year and those predicting contraction had fallen from 29% in the third quarter of 2019 to 15% at the start of the new year.

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HCBF also said its figures showed that the proportion of small firms who said they were struggling to survive had dropped to 3% in January, compared with 15% at the end of 2019.

Gavin Wraith-Carter, MD at HCBF said: “Last year small businesses had to adapt to a period of protracted Brexit uncertainty and the economic ripple it delivered to sectors across the UK.

“We start 2020 with far greater certainty and our research suggests small businesses have switched from staying afloat through cost-cutting to a new era of planning for sales growth, investing in people and product diversification to boost bottom-line growth.”