Two-third of Singaporean firms gloomy about prospects. (Photo: AFP)

Singapore (VNA) – Singaporean firms are expecting a bumpy ride as 66 percent of surveyed firms said they had become less confident about their prospects over the next three months.

According to the latest Global Economic Conditions Survey (GECS) report recently released, the figure was far above the globe’s 44 percent.

Local businesses in the island country are struggling to find new orders from close trade partners, such as China whose economy has seen a continued slowdown lately.

About 65 percent of polled firms reported a drop in profitable opportunities in the fourth quarter last year, while 38 percent were concerned about falling orders, compared to 25 percent globally, the report said.

The businesses are also worried over possible rises in interest rates which tend to track the US Fed rates closely.

On the global front, declining income is the biggest business concern with nearly half of respondents, or 46 percent, reporting it as a problem in the fourth quarter of 2015, up from 41 percent in the third quarter.

As the result, more than half of large firms, or 58 percent, were cutting or freezing employment.

Businesses also cited rising costs as their second biggest concern.

Despite concerns over global growth, the report found that businesses are not expecting much response from governments.

In fact, the global government expenditure index dropped to its lowest-ever level last quarter, it said, adding that governments which are reliant on revenue from the commodity sector to fund their spending, such as Saudi Arabia, the UEA, Brazil, Russia and Malaysia, could be forced to tighten their belts.-VNA