NEWS

The latest from Balance for Business

Businesses suffering from ‘Brexit-itis’

British Chambers of Commerce director-general Adam Marshall has urged ministers not to focus on Brexit at the expense of business policy. “Among our members, a sense of Brexit-itis has set in. Businesses are tired of hearing nothing except Brexit when they have practical, everyday concerns that are not being addressed,” he said. Separately, the Sunday Times reports […]

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Small business credit approvals hit 30-month low

New research from the Federation of Small Businesses has found that small firms are finding it increasingly difficult to access new finance. Some 60% of small firms that apply for credit are successful. The figures is the lowest since the last quarter in 2015, and down considerably from the 74% recorded in the same quarter […]

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Government must support SMEs

The Government’s implementation minister Oliver Dowden has said the Government Digital Service (GDS) is facing a big challenge in driving end-to-end digitisation across government. He says he is confident the government would achieve end-to-end digital services for citizens by 2020, in line with the government’s transformation strategy. This will in turn involve working closely with […]

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Embrace GDPR to remain competitive

A report from One World Identity has urged companies to embrace GDPR in order to remain competitive. The report notes that regulatory bodies and enterprises both within the EU and abroad are already revising their policies in light of the GDPR, and that companies should follow suit to remain relevant in the digital economy, even […]

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Small firms struggling to get new finance

According to research from the Federation of Small Businesses, only six in 10 companies who apply for credit are now successful, the lowest level since the end of 2015. The FSB added that only 25% of businesses believe credit is “affordable”, down from 30% last year.   However, we’ve yet to come across an ‘unfundable’ […]

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Half of SME owners face bankruptcy over late payments

Research commissioned by The Prompt Payment Directory has found that the number of SME owners struggling financially and suffering from mental health issues as a result has risen 23% on last year to 52%. Late payment issues meant 63% had not paid themselves for some time, 42% had stopped or delayed bonuses, 20% had had […]

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Retailers suffer sharp fall in sales

Britain’s retailers suffered the sharpest drop in business in more than two decades last month with sales down by 3.1%, according to a report from the British Retail Consortium. Sales of items other than food fell by 4.9% on a like-for-like basis in the three months to April, another record low since this measure was […]

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SMEs facing recruitment challenges

Over a quarter (27%) of SMEs struggled to hire skilled workers in Q1 2018 due to low levels of unemployment, according to the latest SME Confidence Tracker from Bibby Financial Services. Over a fifth (23%) of SMEs say they have had to increase wages to retain skilled workers and 22% are having to offer higher […]

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Invoice finance continues to grow

Analysis of the latest UK Finance figures reveals invoice finance is continuing to grow as a means of business lending in the UK. Pure invoice finance reached £18.93bn as of the end of the fourth quarter of 2017, an increase of 0.25% from the £18.88bn recorded at the end of the previous quarter, according to specialist […]

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Corporates struggle with B2B payments

Corporates’ business-to-business payment processes remain complex, erroneous and a deterrent to growth, according to new research. A survey of 100 UK finance professionals by Optal found evidence that companies with more than 1,000 employees were struggling to upgrade and improve their B2B payments operations. Globalisation of companies’ supplier base was cited as a key factor […]

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