A poll of 278 independent financial advisers by Opinium Research discovered that 47% believe it unlikely that the UK economy will show net growth in the opening quarter.
This compares with just 26% expecting the economy to grow over the three-month period.
In addition, 49% of advisers think it is unlikely that the UK economy will expand by 1.2% or more across the whole of 2013. Only 21% expect to see this pace of growth.
Alexa Nightingale, head of financial services research at Opinium Research, said: “Advisers are clearly cautious about what 2013 will hold in terms of markets and the economy. Advising clients on where to get the best returns and protection remains complex.”
The research also showed the Conservative Party’s David Cameron and George Osborne are the most trusted pair to run the economy, with 53% of respondent giving the duo their approval.
Osborne’s move in the Autumn Statement to increase the ISA contribution limit won approval from 81% of advisers while 71% gave their backing to the increases of the higher rate threshold in the 2014-15 and 2015-16 tax years.
Nightingale added: “Overall advisers seem to support the policies set out by George Osborne during the Autumn Statement and feel that he’s best man for the job – for the time being anyway.”
In contrast, just 8% said they trusted the Liberal Democrats’ Nick Clegg and Vince Cable while only 6% approve of Labour’s Ed Miliband and Ed Balls.
Significantly, 26% of advisers said they do not trust any of the above with the responsibility of overseeing the economy.