By Daniel Hunter

The growth of small businesses' income grew by 8% at the end of 2014, the strongest rate for 14 years, according to Barclays.

Data on the total annual income for Barclays' small business customers showed income levels were 20% more than in 2000.

Small businesses in the real estate industry, both management and maintenance, saw the strongest growth just below 15%.

Businesses in the retail and manufacturing sectors faired the worst, with income levels up less than 5%.

On a regional basis, Barclays said that businesses based in London accounted for more than a quarter of small business income growth in 2014. There were increases across all regions of England and Wales, with the South East and East the strongest after London.

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