A key scheme to encourage banks to ramp up their lending has added fuel to the housing market but has so far failed to ignite lending to small businesses, according to the latest data from the Bank of England, reports The Guardian.
Canadian banks have more loans out to Canadian businesses than ever before thanks to low interest rates and business owners hungry to grow.
At the end of November, the banks had $326.7-billion in loans to businesses on their books, up 9% from the same period last year, according to the Bank of Canada.
The banks themselves are no doubt pleased, but as an indicator of what to expect from the economy over the next few months the number is even more important, suggesting business owners may be in a hiring mood.
The latest review of British banks’ lending, released last Friday, is a bleak read. Annual growth in business lending has never recovered following the initial credit crunch (see chart). In fact, banks just marked a grim anniversary: thirty consecutive months of data showing negative lending growth (June 2009 to November 2011).