GDP fell 0.1% in December – business industry reaction

Latest GDP figures has indicated that the UK ended 2023 in recession. The figures showed that GDP fell 0.1% in December, following a 0.2% rise in November. GDP was down 0.3% over the three months to the end of December, a second consecutive quarter of negative growth, pushing the UK into a technical recession. The fall reflects…

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Inflation holds at 4% – business industry reaction

Latest ONS data has found that inflation held steady at 4% year-on-year in January on the back of easing prices for furniture and household goods, food and non-alcoholic beverages. Month-on-month, the headline consumer price index fell to -0.6%, returning to negative territory after December’s surprise increase by 0.4% on the month and 4% annually. Economists…

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Business confidence climbs

The continued recovery of the service sector has boosted business confidence, according to analysis from BDO. The firm’s Output Index shows that output rose for the third consecutive month in January, hitting 99.42. This marks the highest level since July 2022. Meanwhile, the Services-Sub Index reached 100.05 – the highest reading since August 2022. This…

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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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Recession fears are receding

SME anxieties regarding a potential recession have eased by a third (32%) since  Q4 2022, though inflation concerns remain, according to iwoca’s latest research. The findings showed that inder half (49%) of SME finance brokers surveyed report their SME clients having any recession fears––a significant drop compared to 73% in Q4 2022. Economic fears persist…

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Retail sales growth slows in January 

Latest British Retail Consortium (BRC) data  has shown that sales were up by 1.2% year-on-year in January, marking a slowdown on the 1.7% rise recorded in December. The Retail Sales Monitor also shows that January’s sales were down on the 4.2% growth seen in the same month in 2023. Food sales increased 6.3% year on year…

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Energy price rises spur 81% of businesses to raise prices

6th February 2024 Commercial Credit Management |

More than 80% of companies expect to increase prices of their goods and services over the next two years due to rising energy costs. A survey conducted by PwC found that volatile energy costs look set to challenge the competitiveness of UK businesses and add upward pressure to forecasted falls in inflation, as 81% plan to…

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Businesses entered the new year with renewed positivity

1st February 2024 Commercial Credit Management |

Businesses entered the new year with renewed positivity as overall confidence rose to the highest level for nearly two years according to the Lloyds Business Barometer. The research shows overall confidence rose to 44%, up 9 points on the previous month. It was the biggest monthly increase since August and the highest level of confidence…

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Business leaders optimism increases

The IoD Directors’ Economic Confidence Index, which measures business leader optimism in prospects for the UK economy, leapt upwards to -14 in January 2024, up from -28 in December 2023. This represents the Index’s highest value since May 2023 (-6) and the biggest jump in a single month (+14) since this time last year (+30).…

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Demand for guarantee backed SME finance rose by 68% in 2023

31st January 2024 Commercial Credit Management |

Over a third of the owners and directors of small businesses had to take the big step of signing a personal guarantee to keep their businesses afloat in the final quarter of 2023, according to the latest Purbeck Personal Guarantee Insurance (PGI) Monitor. 34% of PGI applications in Quarter 4 2023 were for loans to…

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Fifth of SMEs want to re-join European Union

31st January 2024 Business Lending |

New research from Bibby Foreign Exchange (BFX) has found that UK SMEs trading abroad remain hamstrung by circumstances borne out of Brexit, as the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union (EU) approaches its four-year anniversary. Data from BFX’s 2024 Trading Places report finds that more than half (55%) see the ongoing impact of Brexit as a significant challenge, ranking…

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Construction section hit by 4,370 insolvencies in the past year

30th January 2024 Business | #construction insolvencies

Latest data analysis by Mazars has found that on average a dozen construction firms are going bust every day after 4,370 firms collapsed last year. In the year to the end of November, 4,370 companies went insolvent compared to 4,086 in 2021/22 and 2,481 in 2020/21. This reflected a 7% increase in insolvencies from 2021/22…

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Small firms call out energy suppliers over increase in standing charges

30th January 2024 Business Utilities |

Some energy suppliers are using rocketing standing charges as a way to inflate bills for small firms, according to the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). In its response to Ofgem’s recent consultation on the standing charges system, FSB flagged fresh complaints from members of staggering rises – up to 12-fold increases – in the fixed…

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