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Nearly two-thirds (60%) of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) want to the UK to stay in the European Union, with just 17% in favour of a Brexit, according to accountancy firm Moore Stephens.

The study found that most SME owners are worried that an erosion of the UK’s position within Europe could harm growth opportunities as the cost and complexity of trade increases for UK goods and services.

Mark Lamb, partner at Moore Stephens, said: “Owner-managed businesses are concerned that future growth will be disproportionally hit by a UK exit as they would no longer compete on a level playing field in the EU.

“Economic and political uncertainty is already impacting trade for some SMEs, and there is a fear that leaving the EU could severely destabilise business growth in the long-run.

“The pound is already under pressure following London Mayor Boris Johnson and other political heavyweights coming out this week in support of ‘Brexit’ – which could lead to volatile financial markets in the run-up to the referendum."