BBA figures show rise in bank lending

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The level of high street banks’ lending to small businesses rose by £271 million in March, new figures from the BBA showed today.

Deposits by small businesses increased by £881 million and there were over 52,000 new small businesses banking relationships established in the month.

Commenting on the data, BBA statistics director, David Dooks, said: “The stock of lending to small businesses is around 5% higher than a year ago and has risen in each of the first three months of 2009, reflecting general banking support and individual bank pledges to make finance available.  March also saw an upturn in the number of new small business relationships, bringing the total in the first quarter up to a figure similar to 2008 Q1, despite the more difficult current trading environment.”