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Financial

06/11/2017

Last week's announcement of a 0.25% increase in the bank rate to 0.5% means more cost pressures for small firms as they battle spiralling prices and flagging consumer demand, the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has said. Responding to the Bank of England's announcement, FSB national chairman Mike Cherry, pictured, said an increase was inevitable at some stage but warned that many businesses would be unable to absorb more hikes in the short-term.

The FSB also says that the Chancellor Phillip Hammond must use the Autumn Budget to end what it describes as the "business rates chaos".

"Phillip Hammond should end the staircase tax in England and Wales, bring business rates bill increases under control and commit to more frequent rates revaluations to allow firms to benefit from fluctuations in the property market," it said.

The demand comes seven months after the 2017 business rates revaluation took effect in Scotland, Wales and England on 1 April.