Hicks blog

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.

Small firms rely on planning not luck

Luck does not play a big role in a firm’s success according to nearly three quarters of small business owners, research by software provider Sage has found.

Banks ‘average’ for a third of small firms

More than a third of small business owners describe their current banking services as ‘average’ yet only a fifth would consider moving their account, the Forum of Private Business (FPB) has found.