SMEs continue to feel the pinch as lending contracts

21st January 2013

Business lending fell by £2.

8bn in November 2012. Net lending to small business contracted by £6.4bn over the past year. Commenting on the Trends in Lending report, published today by the Bank of England, John Longworth, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said: "The figures paint a challenging picture for UK firms, as business lending continues to weaken. These numbers reflect the uncertainty of the UK economic outlook and the difficulties in the financial sector, as banks continue the process of deleveraging. The report also confirms that some of our youngest and fastest growing businesses are still struggling to secure the credit they need to grow, stymieing growth across the country. Also, businesses that have weathered the recession and are now looking to fund growth and exports are having the same difficulties. -A fully fledged Business Bank is needed to bring about fundamental change in business finance, and to provide the necessary support to help viable and fast-growing companies get access to finance to grow and drive the recovery out of stagnation."

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