BoE: SMEs miss out on increased lending

Nia Williams

October 29, 2013

However, loans to SMEs decreased by £0.4 billion on a monthly basis and, on a twelve month basis, total business lending fell by 3.2%.

Commenting, Mark Abrahams, director of short-term lender West One Loans, said: “There was once a lot of talk about financial services leaving the rest of the economy trailing. But now the situation seems reversed – resoundingly positive economic figures are leaving mediocre bank lending by the wayside.

“The economy grew 1.5% in the year to September but lending to the UK’s businesses fell by 3.2% over the same twelve months.

“So clearly Britain’s businesses could have generated even more growth if finance was a little more in tune with the reality in boardrooms and on the high street.

“That’s not to say more lending to the property market is a bad thing at all. Rejuvenated house prices are a good sign for the UK – and provide benefits beyond an intangible sense of confidence.

“As a country, our assets are worth more, and we’re borrowing more on the back of that. The real question is where the cash goes. What does it fund? How can we invest new-found finance in projects that actually add more value?

“Commercial finance is the vital link between a bubbly housing market and a solid business environment stuffed with potential. On the back of a rampant housing market and acres of investment opportunities for SMEs, we’re seeing a tangible boom in secured commercial loans – with alternative finance already outpacing the government’s Business Bank for SME loans.”

Sign up to our daily email