The latest news in the finance sector.
Enterprise Finance Guarantee extended, export credit to end
The Enterprise finance Guarantee scheme has been extended by a further four years with another £2bn added into the pot.
Aimed at SME firms with no credit history or collateral, the scheme sees government act as guarantor for loans of between £10,000 and £1m over a three month to ten year period.
“Ensuring that viable businesses have access to suitable and diverse sources of finance is crucial for helping to get the economy growing again,” said Chancellor George Osborne.
“The government is dedicated to creating the conditions for strong, sustainable growth, by ensuring the UK has competitive, dynamic and efficient markets that provide the right support to business.
Meanwhile, the Export Credits Guarantee Department (EGCD) has announced that its fixed-rate export finance (FREF) scheme will close on March 31 next year.
The scheme was first introduced in 2005 and was intended to run until 2008 but it was extended when firms began to struggle to achieve export funding because of the downturn. Its function was to allow banks to offer fixed rate finance for overseas buyers with the EGCD acting as guarantor.
Government has now announced the scheme will end, following a public consultation. If all of the funds allocated for the scheme run out before the end of March, the scheme will be curtailed early.
Debut TM Finance Management award
TM has introduced Financial Management as a new category for The Manufacturer of the Year Awards 2010.
The shortlisted entries this year are: Steel component engineering firm DavyMarkham; Ferranti Technologies, the Oldhambased aerospace components manufacturer; and conservatory makers and winners of the 2009 Shingo Prize, Ultraframe. All three companies have been through transformational change in recent years and have been recognised within their industries for either strong recovery from a weak position or target-beating sales performance.
The winner has been decided and will be announced at the 2010 Awards gala ceremony at the Chesworth Grange in Kenilworth on November 18.
Lloyds TSB sticks to lending targets
Lloyds TSB, which is 41 per cent owned by the taxpayer following 2009’s recessionary bailouts, has announced that it is on track with its government imposed business lending targets having provided £35bn worth of corporate funding so far this year.
In its third quarter report the bank said it expected “a good financial performance” this year, having earlier announced half yearly pre tax profits of £3.95bn – up 44% on the same period in 2009.
The Coalition has set Lloyds and its partnationalised bed fellow Royal Bank of Scotland a combined target of £94bn net lending to businesses for the year. RBS is expected to announce that it too is on track to meet its targets when it announces its results on November 5.
Investment in tooling on the up
The past six months have seen investment stabilise or increase in manufacturing technologies, according to the Manufacturing Technologies Association.
Looking forward over the next six months, 35% of respondents indicated investment would be higher or much higher in comparison to the previous six months, and only 5% said investment would be lower or much lower – hinting at a positive start for 2011.
The September survey also showed a high level of inquiries, following a seasonal dip over July and August. Although invoiced sales were unchanged compared to the August results, the majority of respondents reported a month-onmonth increase in orders in September.