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Fleet managers 'fear car cutbacks'

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Most fleet managers are optimistic about economic recovery, but do not think it will mean an increase in company car numbers, a survey has found.

According to GE Capital's fleet services business, around 30% of managers are concerned about reduction in fleet size.

Of those polled, 57% think the economy is likely to grow slightly at the beginning of next year, 4% expect it to see significant improvement this year, while only 22% thought it would worsen.

Nine out of 10 fleet managers believed running costs would be the major issue for them over the next year, while 70% reckoned that driver and corporate taxation would be the key factor affecting their decisions.

GE Capital's UK fleet commercial leader Gary Kileen said: "While it is encouraging to see that fleet managers anticipate the UK economy to strengthen this year, it is very telling that they do not consider that their own fleets will grow as a result of the improved economy.

"It is understandable that many of these managers are prioritising cost efficiency savings on the back of the recession, but it is interesting that the economic recovery is not linked to an increase in fleet size as businesses look to longer-term growth."

© Press Association 2010