A study by Deloitte showed that confidence among chief finance officers (CFOs) at major companies questioned increased during the fourth quarter of 2010 following dips in the second and third quarters of last year.
Respondents predicted more opportunities for growth and increases in both revenues and profits, especially in those states outside of the UK and within emerging markets.
Appetite for risk among corporates has also risen to its highest level since the survey began during November 2007.
Margaret Ewing, Deloitte partner and vice-chairman, said: "If 2010 was the year of balance sheet rebuilding and cost cutting, then 2011 looks set to be the year in which corporates start spending again.
âA new emphasis on expansion by the UK's large companies lends support to the idea that the recovery is likely to broaden out during 2011 aided by growth in private sector hiring and capital spending.â
The survey saw more than 120 CFOs questioned in December 2010, including 35 from FTSE 100 firms.
By Jim Ottewill