Bank lending to businesses forecast to grow by 1% this year

20th February 2024 Business Lending | #business lending

EY Item Club is predicting that bank lending is expected to remain subdued this year, with elevated interest rates tamping appetite for borrowing. The report says that bank lending to businesses will rise by only 0.8% amid weak demand for credit and restrictive borrowing costs. EY says that although the Bank of England is expected…

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Nearly a third of small businesses planning new finance in 2024

9th February 2024 Alternative Business Lending |

A survey on the state of small business finances by Purbeck Personal Guarantee Insurance has uncovered that despite a turbulent year in 2023 with high inflation and geopolitical unrest knocking consumer confidence, almost a third of small businesses (31%) are making a good profit and 45% are in profit by a small margin.  18% say they are…

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Nearly half small business owners expect turnover growth

Small businesses are increasingly confident over an economic recovery and the positive impact this will have on their finances. A poll by small business lender Iwoca shows that almost half (47%) of small businesses expect their revenues to expand this year, marking a steep increase on the 26% who said the same at the start…

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Businesses lending falls by 20% in Q3

The latest Business Finance Review by UK Finance has revealed a 20% year-on-year drop in lending to SMEs. UK Finance’s latest data shows £3.5 billion was lent to SMEs in the Quarter 3 (Q3) of 2023 compared to £4.4 billion in the same period last year. This represents the fifth consecutive quarterly fall, while gross…

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SMEs funding gap linked to rise in personal guarantees

The difficulty small business owners are experiencing accessing funding without having to sign a personal guarantee has become clear according new analysis by Purbeck Insurance. The company say that October 2023 saw the largest number of small business owners ever recorded, taking insurance to mitigate the risk of signing a personal guarantee as a condition…

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Eight in ten brokers believe banks have reduced appetite to fund SMEs

High street banks are pulling back from lending to small and medium-sized businesses (SMEs). At the same time, demand for capital is set to rise with over eight in ten SME finance experts (83%) believing that high street banks are reducing their appetite to fund the UK’s 5.5m SMEs, according to iwoca’s latest SME Expert…

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Weak business lending to continue into 2024

Bank-to-business lending is forecast to contract 0.5% this year according to EY ITEM Club, as economic challenges and high borrowing costs dampen businesses’ appetites to borrow. The forecast says net lending to SMEs has been much weaker than to larger businesses this year, with the latest Bank of England data showing loans to SMEs were…

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Bank rate maintained at 5.25% – business industry reaction

The Bank of England’s Monetary Policy Committee voted in favour of leaving the base rate at 5.25%. Governor Andrew Bailey insists rates needed to be held high to squeeze inflation out of the economy. In its latest forecast, the Bank cut expectations for UK growth to zero, down from a previous prediction of 0.5%, while…

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Small firms face justice gap due to ombudsman decision

Small companies have been left with “nowhere to turn for justice” during banking disputes following a decision not to extend the reach of the Financial Ombudsman Service, according to an Federation of Small Businesses. The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has decided that it would not be proportionate to provide access to the ombudsman’s dispute resolution…

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Half of businesses say accessing finance is more difficult than 6 months ago

New research from independent SME funder, Bibby Financial Services (BFS), has highlighted a significant threat to the UK economy as banks appear to be retreating from lending to small businesses. Data from BFS’s latest SME Confidence Tracker report reveals that while almost half (43%) of UK SMEs say their need for external finance has increased…

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Rise in confidence to secure finance amongst SMEs

The number of SME owners securing personal guarantee insurance (PGI) for a business loan doubled in September 2023 compared to the same month in 2022 according to research byPurbeck Personal Guarantee Insurance. The research found that SME business owners are now taking on loans that are on average £388,494 from £357,016 in Q3 2022 – an increase of close…

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SMEs repay £5.3bn in first half of 2023

Analysis of the Bank of England’s data on SME lending shows that through the first half of 2023 SMEs saw net lending decrease by £5.3 billion. The research by Ebury has highlighted the urgency with which businesses are now making debt repayments in the aftermath of the various Covid-19 loan schemes and the rising cost…

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Covid loan bill hits £7.39bn 

The Government has paid out £7.39bn to settle bad Covid-era loans, with £2.23bn more in arrears and £750m in default. With data showing that the Government paid out £1.2bn to settle pandemic emergency loans that had gone bad in Q2, Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy figures suggest taxpayers could ending up paying £11.5bn…

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