By Daniel Hunter

Despite apparent optimism in the UK’s economic recovery is disappointed in today’s (Friday) Bank of England’s Trends in Lending Report.

The report showed overall lending to businesses contracted by £2.3billion in the three months to August. This is another indication of the continued sluggishness of the Funding for Lending Scheme (FLS) for the small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) sector.

“Although there are some signs of SMEs starting to take advantage of increased lending opportunities by traditional funders, progress remains slow and still fails to match the momentum that we are seeing amongst alternative funders generally and in pension-led funding in particular," Adam Tavener, of, said.

“It is clear that, despite the Government’s best efforts and the banks taking the opportunity to make more credit lines available, SME owners and directors are continuing to seek alternative routes to back their own businesses.”

“With the SMEs making up 90% of the UK’s total business economy, we are surprised that the general air of optimism hasn’t influenced their lending habits and question whether credit terms still remain too onerous from traditional funders to be attractive. We can only continue to seek a more collaborative approach to lending, which will allow traditional funders to provide a broader range of credit opportunities that will maximise the chances of supporting the businesses now keen to be a part of the UK’s resurgence.”

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