CEO Blog | March 2018 – Moving in the right direction

It is positive to see that GDP forecasts and inflation are moving in the right direction.

This is positive news for our SME customers and we hope that this momentum helps to fuel growth and confidence in the longer term.

As part of the first ever Spring Statement earlier this month, the Chancellor announced that the Office of Budget Responsibility has revised upwards the GDP forecast for 2018 given in the Autumn Budget from 1.4% to 1.5%. While this growth is predicted to slow slightly in 2021 and 2022, this is positive news for companies and consumers alike and it is important we remain optimistic in the longer term.

In addition, the latest Office of National Statistics figures show that inflation fell to 2.7% in February from 3% the previous month. Although there is still a way to go to reach the Government target of 2%, this is a seven-month low and it is encouraging to see inflation moving in the right direction.

While we recognise that these short-term indicators can fluctuate, we remain positive about the longer term.

The announcement recently of a transitional plan towards Brexit is a positive step towards a more orderly progression of the Brexit process, sterling responded strongly on the back of it and the economy continues on the road to recovery. We must do everything that we can to support UK SMEs, the engine of the economy, in continuing to drive growth.

From our perspective as a specialist bank, this means providing access to finance to businesses in the sectors in which we operate, funding everything from a delivery van to a multi-million pound residential development.

We believe in British business and will continue to do everything we can to make sure we all keep moving in the right direction.

Mark Sismey-Durrant
Chief Executive Officer

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