Two-thirds of women SME leaders believe banks are less prepared to lend

Research from independent SME funder Bibby Financial Services (BFS) has found that women business leaders are facing gender inequality in commercial lending, which is hampering the growth ambitions of many SMEs. Data from BFS’s latest SME Confidence Tracker, which surveyed 1,000 UK SMEs, uncovered that two thirds (66%) of women business leaders believe that banks…

Read more

Business lending is predicted to hit 2.8% in 2025

The EY Item Club has forecasted bank-to-business lending will to grow just 0.5% (net) this year, before rising to 2.8% (net) in 2025, as lower borrowing costs boost demand The analysis says lending to UK businesses will increase by 0.5% this year, having contracted by 2.1% in 2023. Looking ahead, growth in business lending is…

Read more

SMEs repaid record £10bn in 2023

Analysis of the Bank of England’s data by Ebury’s SME Borrowing Tracker shows that SMEs repaid almost £10 billion across 2023, with the final three months of 2023 marking the largest quarterly change in SME loans outstanding for 2023 as repayments accelerated towards the end of the year. In 2023, SMEs repaid a net sum of…

Read more

Demand for SME finance increases

Latest UK Finance data has highlighted that £3.5 billion was lent to SMEs in the fourth quarter of 2023 – the first quarter not to see a fall since Q2 2022. Figures from banking trade body UK Finance show that lending to SMEs fell for a third consecutive year in 2023. Gross lending to SMEs…

Read more

High banking charges are a big problem for small businesses

22nd February 2024 Business Lending | #business lending

High banking charges are a bigger blocker to international expansion for businesses than Brexit red tape, according to survey research by Wise. The analysis found that UK small businesses lost £2.8 billion to hidden fees, preventing 69% from expanding further. Business owners said they struggle to compare the market due to a ‘corporate opt out’ that…

Read more

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…

Read more

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…

Read more

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…

Read more

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…

Read more

Banks fail to pass on £7.5bn in interest to SMEs

Small and medium-sized businesses are losing out on £7.5 billion each year because banks are failing to pass on higher interest rates to companies with savings according to research by Allica Bank. The study of the business savings market by Allica Bank found that banks are systematically offering larger companies better savings rates while small…

Read more

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…

Read more

Two-thirds of businesses experiencing difficulty in accessing finance

Two-thirds (65%) more businesses are experiencing difficulty in accessing finance from high-street banks than they were in 2022* as mainstream lenders pull away from the SME market, according to new data from Sonovate. These challenges are now so acute that two in five (39%) UK businesses say that, due to funding being so hard to access,…

Read more

Securing finance key to half of SMEs growth plans

Access to finance is becoming a critical issue for UK small businesses, with new research finding that more than half (53%) would have to put plans on hold if they were unable to secure finance. The research from Novuna Business Finance underlines how important access to finance is for the small business sector at a…

Read more