Health of UK SMEs reaches highest level in 18 months
The health of the UK’s small and medium-sized enterprises has reached its highest level in 18 months, a new quarterly economic index has shown.
Compiled by the Centre for Economics and Business Research Limited (Cebr), the SME Health Check Index used key performance indicators to measure the health of UK SMEs, including employment and confidence.
The index showed an improvement in six of the eight key performance indicators, with SMEs achieving an overall score of 58.9, up from 46.9 in the first quarter of the year.
UK SMEs have seen an increase in lending, and a decrease in the number of bankruptcies, which has contributed to the improvement in their overall health. The index also showed UK SMEs are feeling more confident in 2017 compared to last year.
The North East, Wales, and East Midlands were found to have seen the biggest improvement in SME health, with the North East topping the index in the second quarter of the year.
The index also showed an improvement in the health of Scotland’s SMEs, with businesses seeing an increase in lending, confidence and employment.
Commenting on the index, Graeme Sands, Head of Business Banking at CYBG, said: “At Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks, we understand the importance of SMEs to the UK economy, and the varying challenges businesses are facing.
Despite the uncertain political and economic environment, rises in the index this quarter show there are still opportunities for SMEs to grow and thrive, and we are committed to supporting businesses to develop and achieve their potential.”