Australian firms are more confident about growth prospects in 2014, with the outlook for strong sales activity hitting a 10-year high, according to a monthly business survey released on Tuesday. The latest Dun and Bradstreet Business Expectations Survey shows sales expectations among Australian businesses have risen for a third consecutive quarter to reach their highest level since the fourth quarter of 2003, with 47 percent of the polled firms expecting increased trade during the June quarter. The survey has also found that 70 percent of businesses are more optimistic about growth in 2014 compared to 2013. "The steep lift in sales expectations is a confident statement from the business sector, which is viewing this year with healthy levels of optimism," Dun & Bradstreet Chief Executive Officer Gareth Jones said in a statement. "These recent findings consolidate a broad pick-up in the business outlook that was first observed in the final quarter of last year with more positive expectations for sales, profits, employment and investment."