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SME Credit Demand ‘Expected To Pick Up Before End Of Year’

Forum Of Private Business Reacts To Bank Of England Report


Demand for credit among small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) is set to increase in the coming months, according to the head of policy at the Forum of Private Business.

Alexander Jackman said that while the Bank of England’s Trends in Lending Report showed that demand was “dampened” in third quarter of this year, a greater appetite for lending is expected to emerge in the next three months.

According to the report, the British Bankers Association found that lending to SMEs accounted for 35 per cent of lending by financial services firms to non-financial businesses, with the real estate sector having the largest share in the stock.

The Bank of England added that such figures were broadly unchanged since data collection began in July 2011.

Analysis of the report came after the Sage Business Index revealed confidence among SMEs across the world has now at a three-year high.

Expert Opinion
The first signs of recovery in the economy have emerged in the past six months or so, a period which has seen small businesses begin to change their outlook and consider what the immediate future holds in terms of opportunities.

"As Mr Jackman has highlighted, the next few months will be a vital period for those looking to expand or grow their operations and many will be looking to lend as part of their plans.

"Expansion among ambitious SMEs is of course a key target but growing pains can be an inevitable part of the process. That is why it is vital SMEs ensure they have a solid support network in place which can provide advice on key issues.

"Legal advice is a huge part of this, as it will help them as they look to recruit more staff, put new important employment policies in place and seek new commercial property space, to name but a few issues."
Fergal Dowling, Partner