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CMI managers report card on coalition's half term performance = could do a lot better

The majority of managers in the UK (63%) have little or no confidence in the Government's economic policy, according to figures released today by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI). Almost one in five (19%) gave it a vote of no confidence.

CMI's chief executive, Ann Francke told HR magazine: "There is a real confidence issue at the moment in the UK. We need to address this to get back into growth.

"We were hoping for some stability on the figures but it looks less optimistic and filled with less confidence.

CMI's Economic Outlook Report, which polls managers up to director and CEO level every six months about how the economic situation is affecting business, revealed increasing levels of concern about access to finance, barriers to growth and deficit reduction measures.

The report showed that skills development was high priority for managers - 85% called for tax breaks for investment in skills and 70% believe employers should be given more control over this investment.

It also found that 61% of women feel insecure in their jobs, compared to 40% of men.

Despite the introduction of a variety of measures to improve access to finance for UK organisations, just 7% of those surveyed said they were happy with availability of finance for short-or long-term needs. In line with managers' concerns about access to finance, 86% said the Government should urgently stimulate bank lending to businesses while, at a time of rising youth unemployment, 81% want apprenticeship funding to be increased.

Francke said: "Getting Britain back on its feet requires measures to boost management confidence."

She added: "At the halfway point to the coalition's five-year term, a worrying number of measures of economic health appear to be stagnating or worsening. Those on the ground trying to make their businesses work are still under pressure to cut costs, still insecure in their own jobs and still don't see things changing any time soon."

The Economic Outlook Report was compiled online between 31 August and 13 September 2012. Some 510 CMI members were surveyed for the report.