Dr Adam Marshall, Director of Policy at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said:

"The latest SME Finance Monitor provides further evidence of the ongoing struggles that companies face when they seek to obtain external finance.  It is unfortunate and worrying that SME’s confidence that their bank will agree to their request for funding has declined to its lowest level on record. This mirrors findings from recent BCC research which showed that fully half of firms mistrust banks and building societies, and confirms that much more needs to be done to restore relationships, transparency and trust in the banking system.

"We also note that first-time applicants are still among the least successful when applying for loans and overdrafts from their banks. While this is understandable, as early-stage companies are the most risky, many will be the young and fast-growing companies which are needed to drive the UK economy forward but aren’t getting access to the finance they need.

"Overall, this report strengthens our view that a fully-fledged British Business Bank is needed to bring about a fundamental change in the world of business finance, particularly where discouraged demand and fast-growing businesses are concerned. We hope that next week's Autumn Statement will provide a clear roadmap for the start-up of the Business Bank, as well as a continued drive to boost competition in the financial sector and confident relationships between businesses and banks.”



Notes to editors:


The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) sits at the heart of a powerful nationwide network of 51 Accredited Chambers of Commerce, serving over 104,000 businesses across the UK, which employ over five million people. For more information visit: www.britishchambers.org.uk


Media contacts

Lisa Morrison

T: +44 [0]20 7654 5812
M: +44 [0]7717682221

Allan Williams

T: +44 [0]20 7654 5813
M: +44 [0]7825 746812