Tuesday 9 June 2020 11:44 am

Coronavirus business loan borrowing nears £35bn but CBILS approval rate languishes

Save our SMEs

British businesses have borrowed almost £35bn under the government’s three emergency coronavirus credit programmes, but the approval rate for coronavirus business interruption loans (CBILS) remains just over 50 per cent.

The bounce back loan scheme, which supports small businesses with 100 per cent state-backed loans, continued to see the strongest demand, according to new figures from the Treasury.

Total lending under the bounce back scheme rose to £23.8bn by 7 June, up from £21.3bn a week earlier. Some 782,246 small businesses have received bounce back loans from British lenders. 

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Bounce back loans allow small businesses to receive a loan worth a quarter of their turnover, up to £50,000, within as little as 24 hours.

The figure represents a slightly smaller increase in bounce back lending than the previous week, Treasury data showed, with an approval rate of 81 per cent.

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The approval rate for CBILS remained significantly lower than for bounce back loans at just over 51 per cent. Of the 93,305 businesses that applied for a loan under the scheme, just 47,650 were approved. 

As of 7 June, a total of £9.6bn had been lent to businesses under the CBILS scheme, which carries an 80 per cent government guarantee, up from £8.9bn a week earlier. 

Applications for the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS) continued to have the lowest approval rate of any of the government-backed loans at 40 per cent. 

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Some 615 larger businesses have applied for loans under the scheme, but just 244 of those applications have been approved. 

A total of £1.57bn has so far been lent out under CLBILS, an increase of £500m on the previous week. 

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