Hicks blog

Fewer SMEs using bank finance

The proportion of SMEs using tradional forms of finance fell in the second quater of 2014, according to research by BDRC Continental.

Record confidence among small businesses

Confidence among small businesses has reached record levels, research by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) has found.

SME loan success rate up to 80%

Four out of 5 SME loan applications were approved in 2014, compared with 71% in 2013, according to research by venture capital firm Albion Ventures.

YOUR MONEY

The number of people planning to save over the next 3 months increased from 16% in spring 2013 to 18% in spring 2014, according to National Savings & Investments (NS&I).

SME overseas sales growth predicted

Overseas sales for small and medium-sized firms (SMEs) are predicted to total £15 billion over the next 12 months, according to a survey by Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks.

Overtime normal for most managers

More than 90% of managers work more than their contracted weekly hours, according to research from the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM).

A quarter want to be entrepreneurs

More than a quarter of employees dream of running a business, according to a survey from Lloyds Bank Insurance.

Free retirement guidance should be independent

There is widespread support for government proposals to provide free retirement guidance but more than half of over-55s think it should come from an independent, consumer body.

YOUR MONEY

More than half (53%) of people are now saving adequately for retirement, according to a survey by Scottish Widows.

IT and digital support for SMEs

SMEs can now apply for IT and digital support worth up to £2,000, after the UK IT Association (UKITA) joined the government’s Growth Voucher programme.