A business group has warned that the economy is in a "precarious" state after directors gave a downbeat view of the coming months.
A survey of more than 1,100 members of the Institute of Directors (IoD) showed that only a handful believed UK economic performance would be much higher than the 0.6% predicted by the Office for Budget Responsibility.
A third of those polled said growth could actually be lower.
Graeme Leach, the IoD's chief economist, said: "The economy is still in a precarious position, with business confidence a key factor in its future direction. It is troubling that confidence is currently subdued.
"The Budget made a positive impression on business leaders, so it is now a question of ensuring every area of Government policy is geared to help the private sector grow.
"There is a clear appetite among businesses for the Chancellor to abandon the policy of ring-fencing some budgets against any cuts at all. It is time for all spending to be examined in full to find ways to save money."