Report shows decline in small business lending

There was a decline in small business lending in one year across ten cities in the UK, according to a report from Hampshire Trust Bank.

The SME Growth Watch Report 2016 showed a 6 per cent drop of £2 billion between the fourth quarter of 2014 and the fourth quarter of 2015. However, the British Bankers’ Association (BBA) said that small business lending has picked up again in 2016.


The report found that small businesses in London were lent the most in 2015, receiving £77 billion, with a drop of just 6 per cent. Small business lending decreased in Edinburgh by 9 per cent, whilst Manchester saw a decrease of 8 per cent.

Despite the report showing a decline in lending, over 50 per cent of businesses surveyed said that they feel confident about securing finance over the next 12 months.

The report identified the areas where small businesses feel the most confident about obtaining finance to enable them to grow, with 70 per cent of businesses in the North East and North West feeling confident, compared to 60 per cent in London.


Hampshire Trust Bank Chief Executive, Mark Sismey-Durrant, said: “For too long, larger lenders have dominated personal and business banking and this has had a negative effect on small businesses, which often do not meet the lending criteria.”

He added that small businesses should be confident about the future because there are different finance providers, away from the high street banks, which have the ability to support smaller businesses with their aspirations for expansion.

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